NFL Star's Wife Donna Rayford Provides Healing and Support for Domestic Violence Victims with A Night in Paris

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Miss California USA 2011 Contestants And Blankenship Ballet Company Join Donna Rayford’s Theatrical High Fashion Runway Show To Aid In The Fight Against Domestic Violence. Non Profit Safe Passage: Providing Extreme Help, Healing and Hope to Victims of Domestic Violence,

In light of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Donna Rayford in association with Safe Passage, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit organization that provides extreme help, healing and hope to victims of domestic violence, will debut A Night In Paris-Where Theater Meets High Fashion Runway. The event takes place October 16, at the landmark Million Dollar Theater in downtown Los Angeles.

Rayford, the production’s artistic director and executive producer, explained that she was compelled to create A Night In Paris while mourning the death of her husband, Michael Durden, a six-foot-four UCLA star corner back turned Canadian Football League and NFL star. During the 2010 summer launch party for her company, Crown Jewel Studios, Rayford publicly admitted she was a victim of domestic violence prior to marrying Durden, who she witnessed take his last breath five months after they wed.

Rayford, whose diverse resume includes positions as high-end cosmetics and fashion buyers, as well as a theatrical director, says her frequent dreams of Paris—a place where she and Durden eagerly anticipated spending their late honeymoon—prompted her to awake from her sleep and write. Soon after, Rayford met the event’s co-producer, actor Kiko Ellsworth (General Hospital, Port Charles, Tekken, Bad Boys 2). Together the creative partners will debut their 15 minute “dramedy” entitled Fashion Haus on the theater’s big screen.

“All of my life experiences, good and bad, have been fused into this,” says Rayford of the night's main event, which contains nine scenes, each simulating a monumental Parisian location. “After several years of preparation, it’s seems surreal that this is finally manifesting in such a major way. There’s no doubt in my mind that it was predestined.”

A Night In Paris will include a cast of 40 models, actors and dancers who will be outfitted in the haute couture collections of 14 designers, including Remy Hou, June Kim, Delisé Ana, Roy Smoothe (London) and Chan GoesHard. Supermodel slash actor Eebra Tooré, from Paris, who in late August contacted Rayford requesting to participate in the production says, “I planned to go back to Paris September 18, but I really wanted to be in the show, so when Donna said yes, I happily extended my stay.”

The prestigious Blankenship Ballet Company and 10 Miss California USA 2011 contestants have also decided to partake in the event, not only to aid in the fight against domestic violence, but to help create a powerful impact as Rayford’s dreams unfold. Rayford vows it will be “an unprecedented night.”

Tickets are now priced at $10, $25, and $100 for VIP attendees; tickets can be purchased
Tito Ruiz
TRu Ink Media, LLC
E: info(at)TRuInkMedia(dot)com


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