Apollo Amateur Night to Feature Special
Tribute to the King of Pop
Wednesday, July 1, 2009 at 7:30p.m.
Harlem, NY, June 27, 2009 –The Apollo Theater Foundation today announced plans to honor the late Michael Jackson with special events to commemorate and celebrate his life. The “King of Pop” performed at the world-famous Apollo several times in his career – first, in 1969 when he was just a young boy, and, most recently, in 2002 at the invitation of former President Bill Clinton at a fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee.
On Tuesday, June 30, 2009, the Apollo will welcome the public into the Theater to pay tribute to Mr. Jackson, hear his music, and see video tributes to the late pop star . Apollo President and CEO Jonelle Procope, the Reverend Al Sharpton, and others will offer eulogies under the Apollo marquee at 2:00p.m. On Wednesday, July 1, 2009, the Apollo will dedicate its weekly Amateur Night show to Mr. Jackson with special performances and dance features such as a moon walking contest. Further, the Apollo has erected a signature wall outside the Theater where mourners can write condolences and leave remembrances. The Theater also has plans to do a star-studded tribute to Mr. Jackson later in the month of July.
“Michael first performed at the Apollo in the late 1960s with his brothers and won Amateur Night, which catapulted their career as the Jackson 5. We will always remember Michael in our hearts as part of the Apollo’s family of artists and a true Apollo legend. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family. He will be deeply missed,” said Jonelle Procope, president and CEO of the Apollo Theater Foundation. “From the moment the news of his passing was made public, fans began gathering at the Apollo to pay their respects and celebrate Michael’s life. We at the Apollo thought it was important to put these events together to give Michael’s fans the chance to remember him as the consummate entertainer that he was.”
Statement to the Press , Tuesday, June 30, 2009, Starting at 2:00p.m.
Jonelle Procope, President & CEO of the Apollo Theater Foundation, will speak to the press and will be joined by the Reverend Al Sharpton to eulogize the late icon.
Public Memorial, Tuesday, June 30, 2009, Starting at 2:00p.m.
Starting at 2:00p.m., the Apollo will welcome visitors, 600 at a time, to enter the Theater to pay their respects, hear Michael Jackson’s music, and see video tributes to the late pop star. DJs will be spinning Michael Jackson tunes to accompany a 30-minute video tribute to the star. Fans will have the opportunity to leave flowers and memorabilia, their Michael Jackson memories, and write condolence messages to the family on a special tribute wall that is located just outside the Theater. The tribute event will occur in cycles of approximately 45 minutes throughout the day beginning at 2:15p.m., with the final entry occurring at 8:30p.m.
Amateur Night, Wednesday, July 1, 2009 at 7:30 p.m.
The Apollo’s Amateur Night show on July 1 will feature C.P. Lacey, known to Apollo audiences as “The Executioner” and for his celebrity impersonations, will perform a special tribute to the King of Pop, and Amateur Night Music Director Ray Chew will perform a medley of Jackson’s hits and, with Apollo personality Joe Gray, will encourage audience members to moonwalk and dance in the style of Michael Jackson during the Apollo soul train dance line segment at the top of the show.
About the Apollo Theater
Celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2009, the Apollo Theater is one of Harlem’s, New York City’s, and America’s most iconic and enduring cultural institutions. The Apollo was one of the first theaters in New York, and the country, to fully integrate, welcoming traditionally African-American, Hispanic, and local immigrant populations in the audience, as well as headlining uniquely talented entertainers who found it difficult to gain entrance to other venues of similar size and resources. Since introducing the first Amateur Night contests in 1934, the Apollo Theater has played a major role in cultivating artists and in the emergence of innovative musical genres including jazz, swing, bebop, R&B, gospel, blues, soul, and hip-hop. Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, Sammy Davis, Jr., James Brown, Michael Jackson, Bill Cosby, Gladys Knight, Luther Vandross, D’Angelo, Lauryn Hill, and countless others began their road to stardom on the Apollo’s stage. Based on its cultural significance and architecture, the Apollo Theater received state and city landmark designation in 1983 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.