Apollo Theater

Apollo Theater

The Apollo Theater is undoubtedly one of New York’s major tourist attractions. Situated in Harlem, the Apollo is one of the oldest theaters in the city and is world famous for launching the careers of some of the top artists in the America, especially African-Americans. Today, the Apollo Theater is managed by a not-for-profit organization that aims to revive the location to its former glory and runs regular shows, amateur nights and other activities.

About the Theater

History
Founded in 1914, the Apollo Theater was originally named the Hurtig and Seamon’s New Burlesque Theater. In 1934, the first Amateur Night at the Apollo was launched, and some of the industry’s top performers started off their careers at these events. Singers like Ella Fitzgerald, Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday all began at the Apollo, while later the theater ‘discovered’ Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and James Brown.

Revival
After being bought over in 1981, efforts were made to return the Apollo Theater to its former glory and two years later, the theater received national, state and city landmark status. The establishment was relaunched on its 50th anniversary in 1985 and is now run by a not-for-profit organization, which airs a weekly television program based on the original Amateur Night, and runs an active programming schedule.

Events at the Apollo Theater
Thanks to an active and rejuvenated organizing committee, there is always action going on at the Apollo Theater. Each Wednesday at 7:30, the Apollo Amateur Night takes place like clockwork. There are six scheduled events running each week that include performing arts, special events, community programs and concerts. Every June during Black Music Month, the Apollo pays tribute to the African-American culture and music that made this theater so popular by running a wide range of events, including the annual Spring Benefit.

Outreach
The Apollo Theater is very much a hands-on location that is constantly celebrating its roots through a number of activities. Situated in Harlem, New York City’s third most popular tourist destination, which draws 1.3 million visitors each year, the Apollo Theater reaches out to the community on a regular basis by hosting health fairs, community arts initiatives and providing talent platforms for amateurs from young children to seniors. In addition, visitors can also enjoy daily Apollo Historical Tours that run for an hour each time, and tell the fascinating history of this iconic theater.

Apollo Theater
The Apollo Store, situated on 125th Street, Harlem allows visitors to take home a little piece of this establishment’s history in the form of clothing, key rings and stationary. Plans are being made to launch an online Apollo Store.

Visiting the Apollo Theater NYC

There is no doubt that the Apollo is one of New York’s best-loved theaters, home-growing some of the biggest names in the performance industry. Thanks to continued efforts to preserve the history of this remarkable theater, it has become one of the most visited tourist attractions in New York, and certainly in Harlem. By using the Apollo as the launching pad for young, new talent, the future of this iconic theater seems promising enough.

Location: at 253 West 125th Street (between Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. & Frederick Douglass Boulevards, also known as 7th & 8th Avenues), New York City, New York
Phone: 212-531-5300.

Click here to visit Apollo Theater official website