Shoes as a Metaphor for a Woman's Life Journey

Jean Anderson of the VSA & Jan Gordon

Accomplished soap opera actress Tina Sloan (30 years on The Guiding Light), presented a charming and thoughtful reverie on getting older

(not OLD) with style, humor and grace at the newly-restored Stanford White Casino Theater in Newport, RI recently.


Based on Ms. Sloan's memoir, also entitled Changing Shoes, the one-woman stage show was artfully done, with a screen behind, the stage set packed with shoe boxes, and Ms. Sloan's talking about her life and career following the advice of her Parisian friend, Aga, who told her: when at a crossroads, buy a pair of shoes to take you to the proper place. The teen-aged Tina began with pink Chanel heels, then went through boots, pink Capezios, unattractive flats, and evening shoes while telling her life story, which included finding her husband, having a son, Renny,  and raising him. The section when her son goes to the Iraq War became a little discursive, but all ended well.


Flanked by friends, Marjorie Spencer & Leith Adams await the show

Oh, and Ms. Sloan initially tapped her way onto the stage in (theatrical) tap shoes.


Topsy Taylor was called onto the stage by Jan Gordon, who served as introducer for the evening. The performance was arranged by these ladies, and benefited The Visiting Nurse Services of Newport &

Bristol Counties..  The agency's  president, Jean Anderson,  greeted arrivals at the door.


Newport Seen was a bit surprised to find a few gentlemen in the audience, including Visiting Nurse supporter Captain Dick Erwin, Ms. Sloan's husband, Steve McPherson, the intrepid Greg Fater and Jack Coletta. It was not a Ladies' night, but preponderantly so, as Mary Riggs, Linda Gordon, Carol Ballard, Kim Herrlinger, Bunny Quinn, Marilyn Bardes, Janet Pell and daughter Tripler  seated themselves for the performance.


Dodo Hamilton with VNS's Terry Murphy



While trying on the pink Capezios and the boots, a pastiche of scenes from "The Guiding Light",  unlikely and melodramatic appeared on the screen -- definitely "soap operatic" stuff.


After the performance, the smiling actress signed books in the foyer of the Casino Theater, her husband spoke with guests, and the audience left, inspired.


                                                                           -- L.P.


 Proceeds from the evening benefited Home Care, Hospice and Community Wellness programs of Visiting Nurse Services of Newport and Bristol Counties.


Jean Anderson with Angela & Gary Moore

The artfully stacked set

Bettie Pardee with friend

Gentleman & Happy van Beuren

Topsy Taylor & Ames Cushing

Captain Dick Erwin wore Topsiders

 Friend,  Carol Ballard, Marilyn Bardes & Kim Herrlinger

Serving cocktails before the performance

Ms. Sloan on stage with her husband Steve McPherson, whom she thanked

Applauding the Writer/Technical Director Joe Plummer

Kathy & Pierre Irving liked the performance

Janet Pell with her daughter, Tripler Pell

Steve McPherson , Ms. Sloan's husband

Ms. Sloan displays a copy of "Changing Shoes"

Autographing a book for a fan


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