What is your favorite Apollo memory?
This is a tough question! So many to choose from, but here are a few highlights:
- Hearing First Lady Michelle Obama’s inspiring words at the “A Global Conversation on the Power of Educating Adolescent Girls” panel discussion, hosted by Glamour;
- Seeing Alicia Keys perform her entire new album Here live;
- Dancing all night at the Apollo Spring Gala afterparty, including a guest appearance by the legendary Doug E. Fresh;
- Enjoying Amateur Night at the Apollo with Kara’s parents to celebrate their anniversary; and
- Meeting other people / Apollo supporters who enjoy the arts as much as we do through the Apollo Young Patrons!
What was your first encounter with the Apollo Theater?
Aside from watching Showtime at the Apollo on television when we were younger, Kara’s sister, Erica Lee-Benedetto introduced us to the 2012 iteration of the Apollo Young Patrons. Nkrumah signed up as a young patron and Kara had an opportunity to experience the awesome Dining with the Divas luncheon thanks to a gifted ticket from her sister.
Our re-introduction to the Apollo and Apollo Young Patrons happened in fall 2014 through Travis Fraser and Kiara Tinch, and we are so grateful for it! It has been such a fun and exciting ride to help re-launch the Apollo Young Patrons group since then.
Why does the Apollo matter to you? Why now in particular?
The Apollo matters because it is a rich cultural institution that carries a lot of historical significance within the Harlem community and beyond. It also values and elevates the arts in ways that deeply resonate with us.
Why now? It is very important for us to be involved with and connected to the community in which we live. As residents of Harlem, The Apollo has offered clear ways for us to do this –through attending and supporting its music and arts programming as well as its community service oriented events.
Why do you give to the Apollo and how do you feel when you give a gift?
We prioritize giving our time and treasure to The Apollo because of the immense value and diverse, transformative experiences that it offers to all who enter its doors (as well as those who are touched by its external programming). Whenever we donate, we feel as though we are playing a part in ensuring the reach and longevity of The Apollo’s powerful legacy.