Whitney Houston Remembered in Harlem, Tri-State

Fans flocked to the Apollo Theater, while stars spoke out in New York City Monday about the death of Houston

By Andrew Siff
|  Tuesday, Feb 14, 2012  |  Updated 2:04 PM EDT
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Whitney Houston Lights at Prudential Center

NBC New York

Fans flocked to Apollo Theater Monday to pay tribute to Whitney Houston

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Harlem's 125th Street became an impromptu memorial site for Whitney Houston Monday, a destination not just for New Yorkers to mourn the death of a pop superstar but to celebrate the music that touched so many.

Among the dozens singing and dancing were Keisha Armstead and her daughter Aviana Collado, two generations touched by the music of Houston.

"The first song I ever saw, and video, was 'The Greatest Love of All,' and I was three years old," said Armstead. "Her love has played throughout my life, and inspired me as well."

With all that inspiration, it's no wonder Houston was the topic of conversation at cultural events across the tri-state area Monday.

"A bright light has been dimmed," said jazz musician Gregory Generet. "In our world of music and in the world in general, just because we miss that voice."

How much they miss her was clear at the historic Apollo Theater, where fans were writing messages on the wall outside and leaving bouquets of flowers. Some even brought cards for the Houston family.

On 34th Street, at the Evidence Dance Gala at The Manhattan Center, actress Phylicia Rashad said the last two days have been overwhelming.

"I've been thinking a lot about Whitney Houston's mother," she told NBC New York. "I can't really speak for her mother. But at a time like this, I imagine one would want the world to go silent for awhile."

The sentiment was echoed by model Beverly Johnson, who walked the runway with Houston when she started her career.

"There hasn't been many times where I have felt like the world stopped," said Johnson. "Her passing, I believe, stopped the world for a moment."

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