About Ruby’s

Situated on the corner of Little Lonsdale Street and Bennetts Lane, the bright yellow entrance of Ruby’s Music Room is tucked neatly in a secret lane way – to find it, one must pass her eclectic windows filled with Cubano dolls and New Orleanian memorabilia, miniature pianos, jewellery, menus, cigar wrappers, and kitsch collectibles from around the world. The interior features a prized Steinway D Grand Piano, Gretsch drum kit, the latest in sound and lighting technology, a projector and screen, and an award-winning parquetry floor.

With performances ranging from standard classical to throwback jazz to contemporary and experimental artists, full bar service, and an array of finger foods to nibble on, Ruby’s is the perfect place to experience live music in a lounge setting in Melbourne!

Ruby-1

 

RUBY’S STORY

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Robert Cripps, founder of Ruby’s Music Room, explains the history behind the venue in his own words:

“For forty years, I was in art transport and equipment manufacturing for the museum arena (most recently Guildford Lane Gallery). It was at GLG with the use of two grand pianos when I started to have musicians performing to further enhance the artistic environment. I looked everywhere in the Melbourne CBD for a building that could suit the needs of a high performance live music venue. Eventually, I came across a great three-story, 19th-century building with an interesting history. Originally, it was a Chinese carpentry workshop, then a plumbers workshop, and, until recently, a building site office. In this little pocket of Melbourne, a colourful underworld history of Victorian-era opium dens and brothels once resided, but has made way for a vibrant 21st century of live music, great cafes, food and bars. Better still, all of this history and entertainment is in the direct vicinity of two train stations and countless tramlines.”

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RUBY’S NAME

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At the ripe old age of twenty two dog years (150 human years), Ruby the Kelpie was ‘une grande dame.’ She travelled across the continent with her best friend Robert and acquired an eclectic taste for life’s finer things: in particular, music and food (there was nothing canned for this lady!). Ruby was a magnificent dog and friend, a lover of jazz, classical, opera, and world music, and aimed to share this love with the fine people of Melbourne in the eclectic jazz quarter of Little Lonsdale and Bennetts Lane. Sadly, Ruby passed away during the final stages of construction, but nonetheless a fine twenty-two-year effort for such a fine charge. Her angel now sits above the bar, with her bowl close by in a display cabinet.

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RUBY’S Sound

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At Ruby’s Music Room, our musician-friendly PA system is state-of-the-art, eliminating the need for extraneous amplification. This is done to maintain the high quality of acoustic performance that Ruby’s has been designed to produce, and get the best sound out of every instrument.

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CUBANO DOLLS EXHIBITION

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Maria and Dolls

Cubano Dolls, commissioned by Ruby’s Music Room.

The dolls are dressed by Maria de los Angeles Izquierdo Pequeños (known by everyone only as Maria), a Cubano artist living in Abel Santamaria, Havana. A master seamstress, a teacher, and a speech therapist, she works her craft with extraordinary imagination, joining two cultures distant in space and time: the Yoruba, a religion of Cuba, and the African culture inherited from the Congo and the Mandingo. The dolls represent a history of slavery of black women, the sorrows and sadness which have run a long way since the 19th century, yet each doll’s apparel is a work of art and a message of peace from the hot and hospitable Cuban land.

 

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