Apollo Theater

Apollo Theater



The Apollo Theater at 253 West 125th Street between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard (formerly Seventh Avenue) and Frederick Douglass Boulevard (formerly Eighth Avenue) in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City is a music hall which is a noted venue for African-American performers. It was the home of Showtime at the Apollo, a nationally syndicated television variety show which showcased new talent, from 1987 to 2008, encompassing 1,093 episodes.

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During the Apollo Theater’s heyday as a showcase for Black performers from the 1930s into the 1970s, nearly every important African-American entertainer played here, including many LGBT stars, such as comedian Jackie “Moms” Mabley and singers Alberta Hunter, Little Richard, Luther Vandross, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, and Johnny Mathis, among others. In the 1960s, the popular drag show Jewel Box Revue was often hosted by LGBT icon, Stormé DeLarverie.
LGBT History in Harlem
NYC LGBT Historic Sites7 places
For generations, communities across the nation have commemorated and celebrated June 19th with parades, picnics, performances, and speeches, as they uplift the importance of community, education, civic engagement, and freedom. And now the celebration is the 11th federal holiday, and first declared since Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in 1983. Here, at a typical celebrations in 2018, students parade past the historic Apollo Theater in Harlem, NY, demonstrating the enduring impact of Juneteenth.
The History and Legacy of Juneteenth
Smithsonian Institution15 places
It’s impossible to capture this theater’s significance in a single sentence, but Nat “King” Cole biographer Will Friedwald came close: “Just as the theater itself is in the geographical epicenter of Harlem, the Apollo has always been ground zero for every major development in African American vernacular music, from swing bands in the 1930s, to bebop and R&B in the ’40s, gospel and soul in the ’50s and ’60s, followed by funk, reggae, rap, hip-hop, and every sound that has come since.”
Essential New York City Music Venues
Apple Music13 places
“The famed music hall hosted Showtime at the Apollo for more than 20 years, serving as a vessel for many classic hip-hop performances. Beyond hip-hop, the theater, which opened its doors in 1914, has served as a historic venue for Black performers and the evolution of jazz, gospel, soul, and other music genres.”
Jonathan Abrams’ NYC Hip-Hop Spots
I Just Love10 places
“Be sure to check out the Apollo Theater, in Harlem, on 125th Street between Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard and Frederick Douglass Boulevard, with its long tradition of stage and talent shows.”
Gloria Steinem's NYC Spots
Hyperlocal10 places
Founded in 1914, the historic Apollo Theater in Harlem has been a major cultural force and venue for American music and artists, showcasing genres such as jazz, R & B, gospel, soul and hip-hop. Its world-famous amateur night began in 1934, with many future legends taking the stage early in their career. Other giants of music and entertainment who have performed here include Ella Fitzgerald, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Sarah Vaughn and Billie Holiday.
NYC Spots to Learn About Black History
Tinybeans13 places

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