The Art of Being Beth

By: Tori DellaRocca

August 05, 2021

Featured member & Artown Executive Director, Beth Macmillan

Beth Macmillan is a work of art in her own right. This Sterling Silver Club featured member is also a one-time professional dancer who now takes center stage as the passionate leader of Artown, northern Nevada’s colorful and wonderfully diverse, month-long celebration of the arts –happening throughout Reno in July!

So how might we paint a portrait of someone as unique as Beth? We thought an art-full Q&A was a good place to start.

Question: Can you tell us how you came to Reno and to your post as executive director of Artown?

“I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and eventually moved to Reno, Nevada to dance in a show called ‘Hello Hollywood Hello!’ at the MGM Grand Resort (now known as the Grand Sierra Resort). I joined Artown in 2001, became executive director a year later and have thoroughly enjoyed my journey there – and here in Reno – every single day since.”

Question: What do you love about the arts?

“I love how the arts build creative minds in all of us. The arts spark our imagination and encourage innovation. We are all artists. We dress with creative intention, decorate our homes imaginatively and cook meals for ourselves and others to impress and satisfy through culinary artistry.” Beth’s Favorite Color: Green “I love the way green clothing looks on me and makes my eyes sparkle. Green is a calming color and my home is painted a soft and calming green on the interior.”

Question: What is your personal vision and hope for the arts community in Reno/Sparks and northern Nevada?

“My vision for the arts in our community is that we continue to build a cultural center in northern Nevada. We are a destination for the arts and should continue to build strength in that draw. Reno has become a place where artists are finding a home and are able to work and create artistry in every genre. My hope is that everything that is happening with the arts here is just the beginning.”

Question: Do you think a person’s health can benefit from exposure to the arts?

“I believe wholeheartedly that the arts are tied to health. Renown has a healing arts program which helps patients heal through creating art. I also know that Artown brings people together and out of isolation, which is one of the biggest culprits for depression. Artown encourages folks to come out and enjoy the outdoors, gatherings with friends and enjoyment of the arts – all of which build a healthy lifestyle. During COVID-19, Artown also helped heal of our community through our Heart own program, which encouraged creativity and inspiration. In short, I feel the arts are essential to our wellbeing, on many levels.”

Question: What do you do to stay vibrant and healthy?

“I always have a project going. I love to restore furniture, sew, paint, garden, knit and cook interesting meals for friends. I try to eat a healthy diet with tons of veggies and fruit. I also enjoy hiking, paddle boarding, gardening and yoga, all of which keep my working-out enjoyable and satisfying.” Beth’s Artown Highlight “When we brought Mikhail Baryshnikov to Reno… it made me proud of our community. It was one of the best performances I have ever seen and I didn’t have to go to a major market to see him perform.”

Question: What do you appreciate most about your life at 55+ and what advice would you offer to other club members to help them live their best lives?

“I lost my husband to cancer when he was young. His passing reminds me to cherish every moment of every day and take time to look around and be grateful for life. I am eternally grateful for my two sons. One is an engineer for a local construction company, the other is completing his studies in type theory in Gothenburg, Sweden. And I am in the arts – what a contrast!”

Question: What excites you about partnering with the Sterling Silver Club for Artown?

“I am excited for what Artown offers Sterling Silver Club members and our entire community. I want everyone to know that the best time in Reno to enjoy one another and the arts is in July, because we have Artown!”

Question: Finally, how would you define the art of life?

“The art of life is to create a world you want to read in a book, see in a painting, watch in a ballet, experience in a play and hear in music.” The Sterling Silver Club thanks Beth for being such an inspiring ambassador and for her tireless dedication to celebrating and supporting the arts in our community through Artown!

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