Jennifer Hudson to Perform at the Apollo Following ‘Respect’ Premiere

Catherine DiMeglio
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Jennifer HudsonPaul Morigi/Getty Images

Jennifer Hudson will be doing a whole lot of singing following the premiere of Respect. The award winning superstar will headline the iconic Apollo Theater in a performance dedicated to Black women business owners. The show is being sponsored by Mastercard and is in alliance with Black Business Month. Hudson will hit the stage as the theater’s first live music performance since March 2020.


Jennifer Hudson Live at The Apollo

In honor of Black Business Month, Mastercard will present “Jennifer Hudson Live at The Apollo” on August 19. At this intimate gathering of Black women entrepreneurs and select cardholders, Hudson will perform classic Aretha Franklin hits featured in Respect as well as songs from her own catalogue. 

“I’m a black woman with my own business, that inspires me, which made me want to be a part of helping support other black women and their businesses,” Hudson said to Black Enterprise.

In Hudson’s special appearance, she will unveil the “Strivers Gallery.” This features portraits of the guests of honor. It also honors the Fearless Strivers Grant Contest recipients.


Respect Ties Into Challenges Black Women Still Face

Hudson’s role in Respect, portrays the “Queen of Soul,” Aretha Franklin. It is a film surrounding the music of the icon. However, it also touches on the challenges Black women faced, and are still facing today. The biopic brings a new perspective into the life of Franklin, and how her supporters encouraged her unique talent. She became a trailblazer in the industry and used her conviction to break down barriers for Black women in generations to come.

Hudson was hand-picked by Aretha Franklin to play her in the movie. Hudson also admits that Franklin was the blueprint to her singing career. From her time on American Idol, to winning an Oscar and a Grammy, “The Queen of Soul” has been her inspiration.

“My American Idol audition was ‘Share Your Love With Me’ by Aretha Franklin,” Hudson told Black Enterprise. “My American Idol tour song was ‘(sweet sweet baby) Since You’ve Been Gone’ by Aretha Franklin. I’ve been able to tribute her numerous times throughout my career. Growing up in the church, the hymns we sang every Sunday came from her amazing grace album.”


Prior to Hudson’s performance live at the Apollo, you can catch Respect in theaters August 13. Tickets are also available for pre-order to see the “natural woman” in action.

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