Rare, Original and Never-Before-Seen Artifacts of John Lennon on Display to Public

In True Rock and Roll Style the Annex Extends to Late Hours, Seven Days a Week


“I have a love of this country. Two thousand years ago, we would all have wanted to live in Rome…and now this [NYC] is Rome. This is where the action is.” ~John Lennon

NEW YORK, NY—(April 28, 2009) —The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Annex NYC is proud to present JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS, which opens May 12, 2009. This feature exhibit explores John Lennon’s passion for music, art, politics and film, with New York City as his backdrop. Capturing a time in Lennon’s life that was full of political and social activism, the exhibit reflects the spirit of the era during which he created some of his best work. Highlights of Lennon’s artifacts include his inimitable fashion statements, iconic photographs, legendary instruments, original handwritten lyrics and artwork.

To denote Lennon’s lengthy fight against deportation, instigated by the Nixon administration’s belief that his anti-war campaign presented a threat to its power, his green card and never-before-seen letters of support for his American visa are on display. These private letters are penned by the likes of famed singer/songwriter Joan Baez, entertainer Dick Clark and John Lindsay, the mayor of NYC from 1966 to 1973.  Also debuting is an original self portrait of Lennon with fist in air, in the guise of New York City’s famed landmark, the Statue of Liberty. Created in the early Seventies, this powerful work of art represents a tumultuous and impactful period in American history; a time that focused on freedom and the power of the people. 

Visitors to JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS will also be the first to see Lennon’s actual “New York City” t-shirt, which became indelibly identified with John Lennon, as well as the famed Telecaster guitar Lennon used during the historic Elton John concert at Madison Square Garden in 1974. In addition, JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS presents numerous rare and original hand written lyrics, with more than ten songs on display, including “Nobody Told Me,” “Luck of the Irish,” and the legendary “Whatever Gets You thru the Night.”

Created for the NYC Annex by Yoko Ono and curated by Jim Henke, Vice President of Exhibitions and Curatorial Affairs for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS serves as a tribute to Lennon, his work both in and out of the music scene and the undeniable influences of New York City. A portion of the cost of each ticket to the exhibition will be donated to Spirit Foundations, a charitable foundation set up by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, to further their philanthropic initiatives. Exhibition Planning and Design for JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS is by the New York based company Ralph Appelbaum Associates Incorporated.

As JOHN LENNON: THE NEW YORK CITY YEARS personifies the true spirit of John Lennon, New York City and rock & roll, all of which are synonymous with pulsating nightlife, the NYC Annex will extend its hours throughout the special exhibit’s stay.  The extended exhibit hours are Sunday – Thursday from 11:00am to 10:00pm and Friday – Saturday from 11:00am to Midnight with last admission one hour prior to closing. For tickets call (866) 9-ROCKNY or (866) 976-2569, go to http://www.rockannex.com or visit the box office located at 76 Mercer Street (between Spring & Broome Sts.), New York, NY 10012. For general information please call (646) 786-6680.

About the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Annex NYC: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Annex NYC is an experiential, technologically advanced exhibition that focuses on the greatest moments in rock history and resonates with everyone from the casual music fan to the seasoned rock enthusiast. The Annex also showcases selected items from Cleveland’s Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s vast collection, including Bruce Springsteen’s 1957 Chevy, John Lennon’s Record Plant Piano, Elvis Presley’s motorcycle jacket, a handwritten poem by Jim Morrison and much more. The venue offers six galleries including the Hall of Fame, the Immersive Theater, Roots & Influences, Moments to Movements, New York Rocks, the Cleveland Gallery and the Special Rotating Exhibit, highlighting rock and roll’s impact on music and allowing visitors to discover, or rediscover, their connection to it all.

About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland: The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission both through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational programs. http://www.rockhall.com

The Museum in Cleveland is the centerpiece and starting point for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s telling the story of rock and roll. The 150,000 square-foot Museum celebrates the history and impact of rock music with exhibits, films, interactive kiosks, education programs and public events. With the new Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Annex in New York, the Rock Hall is for the first time extending its reach outside of Cleveland and establishing space to house its traveling exhibits and speak to new audiences. A portion of proceeds from the Rock and Roll Hall Annex will go to support the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s exhibitions, education initiatives and Library and Archives, scheduled to open in 2010.