In anticipation of the New York premiere of Charlie Parker’s YARDBIRD (April 1st and 3rd), a co-production between the Apollo Theater and Opera Philadelphia, the Theater celebrates its jazz legacy by inducting the iconic and influential jazz saxophonist, Charlie “Yardbird” Parker, into the Apollo Walk of Fame.
The ceremony included presentations recognizing Charlie Parker and photo ops with Apollo President & CEO, Jonelle Procope; legendary instrumentalist, composer, arranger and educator Jimmy Heath, who played with Charlie Parker; Opera Philadelphia President and General Director, David B. Devan, opera star Lawrence Brownlee, who plays Charlie Parker, and quite a few other guests.
Parker had a rich history with the Apollo and performed at the Theater many times, beginning in 1943 with the Earl Hines Orchestra— which included Dizzy Gillespie. During his many engagements at the Apollo, Parker further developed his bebop style and also experimented with classical and other musical forms. Even after his death in 1955, he left a rich influence in the world of jazz and in music overall.
This Charlie Parker induction event, is only one of the many that the Apollo Theater holds throughout the year . As many may know, the Apollo Theater is a not-for-profit organization and currently in the midst of fundraising for its 21st Century Apollo Campaign., created to extend the institution’s role in fostering artistic innovation and in building appreciation of American culture around the world. For more information, visit the Apollo website.