WEST HARTFORD — Like many in the country, Stuart Brown has been shocked by the nightly reports of food insecurity across the country. The West Hartford resident coordinates a weekly food drive on his street for the town’s Food Pantry and www.Food4WH.org, an umbrella group of street-wide efforts, but he wanted to do more. So, through July 1, Brown will be donating all monies he raises through his fund-raising efforts for his online, 24/7 Broadway music radio station, www.SoundsofBroadway.com, to FoodShare.org.
“I have over 12,000 listeners tuning in each month from around the world,” Brown said. “If I can harness even just a small percentage of my audience I could bring in a lot of needed funds for FoodShare.”
The long-time Connecticut resident, who has been coordinating — with Griswold Grocers — the food collection drive on his street for more than 10 years, just shakes his head when thinking of the numbers
impacted by food insecurity due to the pandemic.
“You would think that in a country as rich and bountiful as the United States we wouldn’t be seeing mile-long lines of cars with families desperate for food, even with the COVID crisis going on,” he said. “I think people want to help, but either don’t know how or are nervous about stepping outside their homes to volunteer. I’ve set-up a simple solution. People just have to go to my website, www.SoundsofBroadway.com and click on the Ko-fi icon. Every penny through the beginning of July will help, to some degree, the problem in the Greater Hartford area.”
According to Brown, director of Student Services at the UConn-Waterbury Campus, Sounds of Broadway offers the most wide-ranging listing of music from the Off-Broadway, Broadway, and London stages. Thousands of songs from hundreds of cast recordings are in rotation.
“I feature popular and well-known shows like ‘Wicked,’ ‘My Fair Lady,’ and ‘Hamilton,’” he said. “But, unlike other online radio stations, I’ve included selections from more obscure or little heard of shows. I guess it’s the college educator in me. I want the station to entertain, but I also want to teach people about musical theater history.”