"The Theatre of the People"
Predating venues like the Apollo and the Regal, the Howard Theatre was known for catering to an African-American clientele and played host to prominent African-American musical artists of the early and mid-20th century. Along with jazz legend and D.C. native Duke Ellington, greats like Ella Fitzgerald, Marvin Gaye, Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway, Billie Holiday, Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross and the Supremes, James Brown, and B.B. King have graced its stage. After the 1968 King Riots, the Howard and surrounding U Street neighborhood fell into decline and eventually would shut its doors in 1980. Thanks to a $29 million restoration, the Howard re-opened in 2012 and has been brought back to its former splendor. Recent acts have included Chaka Khan, Boyz II Men, Michael Bolton, and Kendrick Lamar.
By Christian Mirasol, AFAR Local Expert
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620 T St NW, Washington, DC 20001, United States