The Apollo

  • Roger Ross Williams
  • United States
  • 2019
  • 102 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Masters
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Apollo Theater on 125th Street in Harlem is more than just a theater. It’s the birthplace and home of countless great African-American performers: James “Mister Apollo” Brown, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, Prince, Richard Pryor—the list goes on and on. It was in this safe haven that Billie Holiday dared to sing “Strange Fruit” live, and where African-American culture could be freely celebrated. That much is clear from the hyperkinetic edits with lots of never-before-seen footage—including the first-ever shows by “Little” Stevie Wonder and Lauryn Hill—and anecdotes galore in interviews with all the people who were there.

The film’s recurring theme is the dialogue rehearsal for a stage adaptation of Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between The World and Me, which explores what it means to be black in the United States. The Apollo is inextricably bound up with the history of black identity. It was the venue for the memorial service for James Brown, and for a triumphant performance by America’s first black president.

Tickets

The Apollo (IDFA Hit: The Apollo + Doc Talk hosted by Black Achievement Month & John Adams Institute)
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Followed by an interview with the director and Maarten van Hinte, led by Angelique Houtveen.

Sun 24 November - 13:45 - 15:59
Carré Zaal
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The Apollo
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Tue 26 November - 15:30 - 17:17
Munt 13
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The Apollo
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Wed 27 November - 11:30 - 13:17
Munt 11
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The Apollo
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Fri 29 November - 22:30 - 0:17
Tuschinski 5
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The Apollo
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Sat 30 November - 21:30 - 23:17
Podium Mozaïek
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Credits

  • 102 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: English
Director
Roger Ross Williams
Production
Lisa Cortes, Jeanne Elfant Festa, Cassidy Hartmann
Executive producer
Nigel Sinclair, Dan Cogan, Nicholas Farrell, Julie Goldman
Cinematography
Michael Dwyer
Editing
Jean Tsien, John Fisher
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IDFA history