About the festival

The Apollo Theater in Harlem has presented WOW Apollo since 2015, The programming centres on issues and topics of interest to Women of Color speaking to Harlem and New York, presenting an array of music, film, workshops, conversations, panels and performances.

The latest festival, which took place online in 2021 due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, was a two day digital festival with the theme of “Black Women Transcending!”. The programme featured participants including HBO’s “Lovecraft Country” award-winning actress Aunjanue Ellis; New York Times best-selling author and co-host of CBS’ “The Talk” Elaine Welteroth; poet, writer, and activist Nikki Giovanni; host of SiriusXM’s “Bevelations,” media personality and author Bevy Smith, motivational speaker, editor, and author Harriette Cole; and political and women’s rights activist Dr. Shola Mos-Shogbamimu with performances by Adeline, Dionne Farris, and many more.

Past participants of the Apollo’s WOW have included Nobel Prize Winner Leymah Gbowee; Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong'o; Phoebe Robinson (of Two Dope Queens); Olympian Gabby Douglas; actress Gabourey Sidibe, Iyanla Vanzant, Macy Gray, and Women’s March leaders, Tamika Mallory and Carmen Perez.

WOW Apollo Festivals took place from 11-14 June 2015, 4-7 May 2017, 6 April 2019 and virtually in 2021 (21 - 22nd March 2021)


About the organisers

The legendary Apollo—the soul of American culture—plays a vital role in cultivating emerging artists and launching legends. Since its founding, the Apollo has served as a centre of innovation and a creative catalyst for Harlem, the city of New York, and the world.

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Stay up to date with WOW Apollo here.

Discover more WOWs from around the World

WOW Festivals and events have taken place in more than 30 locations, reaching five million people on six continents since WOW was founded in 2010.