Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs to be honored at Apollo Spring Benefit

Gladys Knight, Spike Lee, Wyclef Jean, and more are slated to be on hand at the annual benefit for the world-famous Harlem theater.

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The Apollo Theater will honor Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Sean “Diddy” Combs at its annual Apollo Spring Benefit on June 12. The yearly benefit helps raise money for the world-famous Harlem venue and non-profit organization’s artistic, education, and community programs.

The benefit, themed “The Next Movement!,” will give Abdul-Jabbar its Impact Award. Academy Award-winning filmmaker-screenwriter Spike Lee will present the award to the NBA Hall of Famer. Abdul-Jabbar is among the most highly decorated American athletes ever, winning six NBA championships and six Most Valuable Player awards over a 20-year career.

Combs is receiving the Icon Award at the benefit. The multi-hyphenate is one of the entertainment’s most successful recognizable figures as a music producer, rapper, fashion entrepreneur, and entertainment mogul. Warby Parker is also being honored at the benefit. The eyewear brand and industry leader will get the Corporate Award.

Provided by The Apollo Theater.

Gladys Knight was announced as a special performer at the event. Stout, singer and alumna of Apollo Music Cafe, is expected to perform a tribute to recently departed singer Tina Turner.

Rappers MC Lyte and Wyclef Jean are also slated to appear at the benefit. Ray Chew returns as the event’s musical director for the 12th time. D-Nice is scheduled to return as the event’s DJ and is planned to host its after-party.

This year’s spring benefit comes as the Apollo’s longtime president and CEO, Jonelle Procope, steps down. Procope was with the theater and organization for 20 years, helping to continue Apollo’s legacy as a cultural center for performance and community.

The Apollo will undergo its first expansion in its 89-year history, with plans to renovate the venue and open Victoria Theaters, two new theater spaces.

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