FAIRFIELD, Conn. – New Paradigm Theatre hosted a shoe drive to help benefit the nonprofit Sole4Souls as part of their live production of Footloose in August in the state- of-the-art theatre at Black Rock Church. The production featured West End London star, Craig Pinder, (original London cast of Les Miserables as Jean Valjean) as Reverend Shaw Moore as well as local youth and adults.
Soles4Souls is a nonprofit charity that turns unwanted shoes and clothing into opportunity. The nonprofit donates the shoes to homeless shelters and disaster relief programs in the United States and around the world. It also helps people in developing countries launch and sustain their own small business by selling the donated shoes and clothing.
The idea originated with Beatrix Allen, whose daughter Julia performed as one of the young people in Footloose. Bea headed up the collection of gently used shoes from the public and cast during rehearsals and shows. “I believed this would be a great opportunity for our youth to help support others in our community and around the world. I also thought it was a great tie-in to Footloose.” says Bea. Liz Litchfield, one of the NPT Youth Board member’s mothers personally found or donated 300 pairs of shoes and NPT partner nonprofit for this show, Kids Helping Kids, also donated 200 pairs of shoes. The rest came from cast and audience members. “One mother that I contacted had lost her 39 year old son in 2020 and was looking for a good cause to donate his barely worn shoes. I received two large hefty bags of his favorite shoes from her”, says Litchfield.
For more information, please refer to the Sole4Souls site, https://soles4souls.org/
Up Next for New Paradigm Theatre is their signature event "So Ya Wanna Be a Broadway Star" on the Lawn! Oct 2nd.