The Apollo Theater
Photos courtesy of Kennected
The Apollo Theater in New York City is one of the most famous music halls in the United States, and the most famous club associated almost exclusively with African-American performers. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and is the home of Showtime at the Apollo, a nationally syndicated variety show consisting of new talent.
The theater is located at 253 W. 125th Street in the New York City borough of Manhattan, specifically in Harlem, one of the United States' most historically significant traditionally black neighborhoods. The Apollo was revived in 1983, when Inner City Broadcasting, a firm owned by former Manhattan borough president Percy E. Sutton purchased the building. It obtained federal, state, and city landmark status, and fully reopened in 1985. The Little Rascals, produced by former actor Jimmy Hawkins, performed at a fiftieth anniversary show at the Apollo that year. The musical duo Hall & Oates played the grand reopening in 1987, which was released on an album that year.
In 1991, the Apollo was purchased by the State of New York.
On December 15, 2005, the Apollo Theater launched the first phase of its refurbishment, costing estimated $65 million. The first phase included the facade and the new light-emitting diode (LED) marquee. Attendees and speakers at the launch event included President Bill Clinton, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Time Warner CEO Richard Parsons.
On December 28, 2006, the body of James Brown, who had died a few days before, was displayed at an Apollo Theater memorial covered heavily by the news media. As of 2009 it is run by the nonprofit Apollo Theater Foundation Inc., and draws an estimated 1.3 million visitors annually.
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The Apollo Theater