Converse harnesses the power of All Stars in new grassroots approach to supporting youth action

Man cut the track, why bring it back? Cause in the midst of injustice all stars turn the world into their canvas, paint the wind just for practice and give colour to madness. With ambitions loud and dreams in the clouds they jump out of your screen and into every scene. This is our team, All Stars.

Ify White-Thorpe for Converse

“What would it look like for Converse to insert itself and to help these game-changers turn ideas into reality?”, this was the question that sparked the creative fuel for what would manifest as the Converse All Stars Series; a new community approach aiming to break down barriers to creative progress for a new generation of cultural game-changers. At its core, the programme hinges on a robust community-focused ecosystem of mentorship, commission and funding with Converse’s global network facilitating capacity building that helps young creatives gain professional experience and opportunity. Rooted in the brand’s iconic All Star sneakers and their history of being adopted by wearers as a means of expression around the world and across cultures, in moments of both rebellion and progress, change and creativity—the All Stars Series is extending with a little help from Converse’s extended family of creative friends and for the first time, opening up this community to the public. Until November, Converse is inviting up to 250 creative individuals to join the All Stars Series as it extends. New members will have the opportunity to engage with the series through an ongoing experience of one-of-a-kind workshops, conversations and performances facilitated by Converse’s extended creative family and starting in October, All Stars can submit individual proposals regarding their own potentially game-changing ideas.

The most recent All Star Series session included the likes of Issa Rae, Lay Zhang, Tobe Nwigwe, Jefferson Hack and Samuel Ross, to name but a few. For over two years, Converse has been steadily growing, engaging and building with a grassroots global community of more than 3,000 individuals from more than 27 cities, spanning from Los Angeles to Lima. These emerging leaders champion change in sport and culture—a network connection with Converse that aims to hone their creative talents and amplify their voices—supported by opportunities to co-create and collaborate on creative work and shape the future of Converse on its social and digital platforms. Positioning youth to drive the progress they want to see in the world, Converse has also committed to a million-dollar accelerator program dubbed the All Star Captains. These All Stars Captains will selectively fast track 13 individuals who are determined to represent the power of “creative action” across a variety of fields including inclusivity, sustainability, and more. And in 2021, the inaugural class of Captains—including James Mathew and Ifeoma “Ify” White-Thorpe, will each get one year of funding to assist in bringing such ideas to life. A campaign and initiative as important and iconic as the institutional house of Converse itself. The campaign film was written and narrated by Ify White-Thorpe under the mentorship of Insecure creator Issa Rae, with the original music by James and Phillip Mathew under the mentorship of Tyler, the Creator.

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