Apollo Theater Announces 2019 Spring Gala Line Up Featuring The Temptations, Estelle, Morris Day And The Time And More!

HARLEM, NY – May 17, 2019 – The Apollo Theater today announced details for its 2019 Apollo Spring Gala, the historic Theater’s largest annual fundraising event, taking place on Monday, June 10 at 7 p.m. In honor of the Theater’s 85th Anniversary, this year’s gala theme is “Icons Revisited,” which will explore iconic Apollo performers through the lens of contemporary artists. The celebratory benefit concert will feature performances by The Temptations, Estelle, José James, Liv Warfield, Morris Day and The Time and Black Violin, and others to be announced. All proceeds from the gala celebration will support the non-profit organization’s year-round, world-class artistic, education, and community programs and collaborations, as well as its commitment to articulating and projecting the African American narrative through arts and culture and creating a 21st century performing arts canon.

“We are thrilled to once again celebrate the legacy of the Apollo Theater at our annual Spring Gala,” said Jonelle Procope, President & CEO of the Apollo Theater. “Each year we take this opportunity to bring together people from different communities - entertainment, philanthropic, business - to help support the Theater. And there’s not a more fitting way to do that than with a night of music and entertainment and celebrating our friends who do so much to give back to the arts.”

Each year at the gala, the Apollo recognizes a corporation for their outstanding contributions to the performing arts, community leadership, and philanthropic support of the African American community. This year, the Theater will present the Corporate Award to Vista Equity Partners and Robert F. Smith , to honor its exemplary leadership and commitment to innovation, diversity and the global community.

"I grew up on the sounds of musicians who performed at the Apollo Theater, so it's an incredible honor to be recognized by an institution that has meant so much to me personally,” said Robert F. Smith, Founder, Chairman & CEO of Vista Equity Partners. “We hope our support can help the Apollo continue to be both a legendary venue for the performance arts and a cultural landmark that helps bind together the vibrant Harlem community."

The Theater, which has always held artists’ voices at its core, also announced that it will induct the iconic group The Temptations ("My Girl" and "Ain't Too Proud To Beg”) into its Walk of Fame on Friday, June 7, ahead of the Gala. Otis Williams, founder and only surviving member will accept the honor. Celebrating and honoring the legendary performers who have helped to build the non-profit Theater’s legacy for 85 years, The Temptations join an iconic line up of inductees who have had an enormous influence on generations of musicians, fans, and culture at-large, including Aretha Franklin, Quincy Jones, Patti Labelle, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Little Richard, Ella Fitzgerald, and more. Inductees are honored with a plaque on the Apollo Walk of Fame, installed under the Theater’s iconic marquee on 125th Street.

The Apollo Spring Gala begins with red carpet arrivals at 6:00 PM followed by the gala concert and awards ceremony at 7:00 PM with Music Director Ray Chew. The evening will also include a post-performance party designed by celebrated event designer and Apollo board member Bronson van Wyck.

Following its 85th anniversary season, the Apollo will continue its first phase in creating the Apollo Performing Arts Center, with the theaters at the Victoria. Scheduled to open in 2020, the project marks the first physical expansion in the theater’s history. For more information about the theaters at the Victoria and the Apollo’s mission to work with and support a greater number of emerging and established artists of color across disciplines, click here.

Gala Chairs: Kimberley Hatchett and Karen H. Pavlin

Honorary Chairs: Laura and Richard D. Parsons, Anna Chapman and Ronald O. Perelman

To purchase Gala tickets or to make a donation to the Apollo Theater, please call 212-531-5347. For more information, visit www.apollotheater.org. Proceeds from the Apollo Spring Gala support the Theater’s year-round performing arts programming, innovative education initiatives, and community programs.

Tickets for the 2019 Spring Gala are now on sale. Please visit www.ticketmaster.com for performance only tickets or www.apollotheater.org/gala2019 to purchase Gala benefit tickets.

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About the Apollo Theater

The legendary Apollo Theater—the soul of American culture—plays a vital role in cultivating emerging artists and launching legends. Since its founding, the Apollo has served as a center of innovation and a creative catalyst for Harlem, the city of New York, and the world.

With music at its core, the Apollo’s programming extends to dance, theater, spoken word, and more. This includes special programs such as the blockbuster concert Bruno Mars Live at the Apollo, the world premiere theatrical reading of Ta-Nehisi Coates’s National Book Award-winning Between the World and Me, 100: The Apollo Celebrates Ella, the annual Africa Now! Festival, and the recent New York premiere of the opera We Shall Not Be Moved. The Apollo is a performing arts presenting organization that also produces festivals and large-scale dance and music works organized around a set of core initiatives that celebrate and extend the Apollo’s legacy through a contemporary lens; global festivals including the Women of the World (WOW) Festival and Breakin’ Convention; international and U.S.-based artist presentations focused on a specific theme; and Special Projects, multidisciplinary collaborations with partner organizations.

Since introducing the first Amateur Night contests in 1934, the Apollo Theater has served as a testing ground for new artists working across a variety of art forms and has ushered in the emergence of many new musical genres—including jazz, swing, bebop, R&B, gospel, blues, soul, and hip-hop. Among the countless legendary performers who launched their careers at the Apollo are Michael Jackson, Ella Fitzgerald, Stevie Wonder, Billie Holiday, James Brown, D’Angelo, Lauryn Hill, Dave Chappelle, Machine Gun Kelly, Miri Ben Ari, Sarah Vaughan, Gladys Knight, and Luther Vandross; and the Apollo’s forward-looking artistic vision continues to build on this legacy.


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Maggie Faircloth and Jimmy Harney (212) 691-2800 ApolloSpringGala@sunshinesachs.com

Apollo Theater


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About The Apollo

The Apollo is an American cultural treasure. It is a vibrant non-profit organization rooted in the Harlem community that engages people from around New York, the nation, and the world. Since 1934, The Apollo has celebrated, created, and presented work that centers Black artists and voices from across the African Diaspora. It has also been a catalyst for social and civic advocacy. Today, The Apollo is the largest performing arts institution committed to Black culture and creativity.

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The Apollo is a commissioner and presenter; catalyst for new artists, audiences, and creative workforce; and partner in the projection of the African American narrative and its role in the development of American and global culture.

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Artist on stage at Apollo Theater

The Apollo envisions a new American canon centered on contributions to the performing arts by artists of the African diaspora, in America and beyond.

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