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Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing: The Apollo Theater


National Museum of African American History & Culture, Smithsonian Institution


Washington, DC

This exhibit celebrates the legendary Apollo Theater in Harlem by bringing together stellar artifacts from African American entertainers, including the Supremes’ dresses, Louis Armstrong’s trumpet, B.B. King's guitar "Lucille" and Michael Jackson's "Beat It" hat and dancing shoes. Rich with super-scale graphics, environmental lighting effects and media, the exhibit first opened at the National Museum of American History, then went on the road to three more venues, including the Museum of the City of New York. H+R was tasked with designing graphics, casework and media installations that could be readily transported in modular crates by Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Services.

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