• Amy Schumer at the Apollo Theater...It's Not The Apollo. It's HBO. (PHOTOS)

    Screenshot from HBO Promo: "Amy Schumer Live At The Apollo"

    I want to be excited about Amy Schumer upcoming HBO special, "Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo Theater." I mean...I REALLY want to be excited about this awesome comedian and satirist taking on the famous (and infamous) Apollo theater crowd! I want to be OVER THE MOON EXCITED to see this show as it's directed by fellow comedy giant, Chris Rock. I actually heard myself say, "AWWW SNAP!! I'm rootin' for the white chick!" But then the HBO promo for the concert happened...and now...I don't have to root for the white chick...because the white chick will have a room full of white chicks to cheer her on.

    SO...while Amy Schumer will be performing at the building called the Apollo Theater, she will not be performing at the institution known to bring the world's best performers to Harlem, New York, and prove they are as good as they THINK they are.

    Since 1912, singers, bands, comedians, and performing acts of an endless variety...of all ethnicities and race...have taken the stage of the famed Apollo Theater. If the act can "wow" the audience and keep them entertained long enough to NOT get boo'ed, not only have you survived a walk through fire, but you have earned a badge of honor among your peers and the respect of Harlem World!

    The practice of letting the performer know just what the audience thinks of them while they were performing became such a legendary litmus test for talent that "Amateur Night At the Apollo" became a popular television show in the 1980's and 90's. This show allowed the world in on their secret: the Harlem audience have not one fuck to give...you BETTER be good! If the act gave a solid to amazing performance, the crowd would let the performer know by cheering and supporting them with the most rousing, raucous and rewarding applause they had ever known or will ever receive in their life. If the act was questionable or down right bad, a quick thirty seconds would be all the audience need to bring the barrage of "boos" and the "get of the stage" gesture before finally inspiring Sandman Sims to come and sweep the performer off the stage. World class acts have been known to be celebrated all over the world, only to be humiliated by the uptown Saturday night crowd at the Apollo. It's a rite of passage.

    The cards have been stacked in Amy Schumer's favor. In recent years, the gentrification of Harlem has led to a shift in residents and business. The Apollo Theater is more regularly booked by Sirus XM Radio acts like Metallica and Paul McCartney...legends, no doubt, but acts performing for predominantly white audiences in a historically black entertainment mecca. Is this simply the way of Harlem now? In the words of Mister from 'The Color Purple', "Could be. Could be not. Who's to say."

    The promo for the show (or shows...comedy concerts aired on tv or film are usually a couple performances edited together the best performance of each joke) is catchy and engaging. My first thought upon seeing it the first was, "Wow...this is one ballsy broad! She is aiming to be the Teena Marie of comedy!" Then the cut aways to the audience happened...and happened...and happened yet again.  I didn't know who to be mad at first: Amy for having the audacity to say she's performing live at THE Apollo or Chris Rock for not protecting his show! I mean...come on Rock! You could have kept all those audience shots to yourself and left us to believe that ole girl was "killin' it at the Apollo". It almost leaves me to wonder if he purposely exposed the truth behind who lives in Harlem World today. Chris Rock is a genius on planet Earth and likely surrounding celestial bodies...did he purposely show us the Apollo Theater  crowd to make a statement about gentrification and cultural appropriation?

    I was excited, yall. I really was...*deep sigh*. Watching the promo on HBO, I can only cringe when Amy yells, "GET THE FUCK UP, APOLLO!" to an audience of white people.

    It's not the Apollo.
    It's HBO.



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