Ruth Koleva

The best way to describe Ruth is that she is a feminine, but edgy individual.

She will tell you she is a rebel at heart with a soft and fragile soul.  Besides her love of music, Ruth is also an activist originally from Bulgaria and has been a champion for those who are marginalized and who cannot fight for themselves for as long as she can remember.

As someone who has seen and lived both through bitter and difficult experiences as well as beautiful ones, she wants to reach the people who are searching for love, acceptance and wholeness.  She wants to give them voice with colors and life. She wants to tell their story along with her own.

Over the years she has developed into a Diva, whose music highly resonates with the LGBTQ+ crowd.

By telling the visual story of Ruth’s single from her new album “Candy Coated” Ruth shed some light on the issues in Eastern European countries and contribute with support to causes focused on LGBTQ+ around the world during the covid-19 pandemic.  The video and remix of “Candy Coated” will be released in June to support Pride, which looks most likely will be celebrated in isolation.

Ruth is not a common Eastern European name, how did you get it?

I was named after my grandmother who immigrated from Greece shortly after the First World War. Even though Ruth is a very popular name in the western world, I grew up feeling an outsider and kids would often bully me because of my name and the fact that I was often seen as a “foreigner”. It was very difficult for me in school, cause I never felt like I fit in.

What is the first thing you instantly notice when meeting new people?

I was raised by a father who taught me that a proper handshake and eye contact is a sign of respect and good manners, so to me it’s still sort of an etiquette I follow. I try not to judge, but always notice if a person is not showing eye contact.

How did you first get involved with the LGBTQ+ community?

I was invited to perform on Sofia Pride back in 2013 when not a single public figure would back up that cause out loud. The organizers were very surprised that I agreed and I later found out why. People were scared even to show up at Pride. At the event there were less than 300 people and there were more police officers than pride supporters. I was shocked and angry, and Pride turned into a personal mission for me after that.

What do you find more difficult – telling someone the way you feel about them or hearing from them how they feel about you? (Or maybe asked in this way: Would you rather give feedback or receive it?)

I always found it difficult to express my feelings, because I’ve grown up with the fear of abandonment. My mother left me when I was around 10 which caused a lot of struggles in my relationships later on. I would always fear rejection and would try to express my own feelings giving “signs” which probably were wrong to begin with. I’ve been working on that for some time now and trying to be more calm and transparent and not fear rejection.

Would you rather have love with heartbreak or no love at all?

I’d rather have love, because to me that’s the strongest force that exists. I’d feel lost if I knew there’s no love at all.

What has been the worst thing about quarantine and what has been the best?

Well, we lost so much – as a species. I am deeply saddened by all the lives lost around the world. It’s truly been a disaster and my prayer goes to all the families of people who died of covid-19. I am so proud and give my full respect to all the people working on the front line – the healthcare workers are the bravest, most inspiring people to me. My grandfather was a doctor, and I cannot put into words the love I share for all the medical workers who are doing their best to save lives around the world. On the bright side of this situation I see an opportunity to stop, think and change. It’s obvious our economic, political and health care systems have had wrong mechanisms and methodologies and this is a balloon we cannot continue to live in. We have to demand changes right now!

What do you most admire about the LGBTQ+ community?

The bravery and love is what makes my connection with the LGBTQ+ community so strong, I admire the courage, love and devotion and I feel part of the community as a human being. It’s the first place where I’ve felt safe, loved and accepted for who I am.

What inspired you to make music?

I started singing and writing when my parents got divorced, it was a very difficult time for me and music was my salvation at that time.

If you could open a show for any artist, who would it be?

I love Emily King, and LP. I’d love to collaborate with them or be a support act for some of their shows.

What would you be doing right now, if it wasn’t for your music career?

I love writing, so I’d either be working in the movie industry or be a journalist. Never too late for that I think.

What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

“Many people will love you and equally many would despise you. Focus only on what make you feel whole.” – my father

Catch Ruth live on Curve’s Youtube Channel and Facebook  9th June 8pm EST