In 1935, a young actor, screenwriter, and dancer had an idea.
He started a weekly amateur night competition at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, in New York City. And before long, Ralph Cooper and his amateur night at the Apollo became a major influence in Black Entertainment.
Over the next five decades, Cooper’s amateur night made hundreds of previously unknown performers into Stars.
I met Ralph Cooper in 1991, when he wrote A Memoir of his many years at the Apollo.