More Information on American
Since its inception in September 1997, the Museum hosts thousands of students, scholars, musicians, and fans of the arts for over 200 performances, education programs, special exhibitions, community events, and more each year, providing an opportunity to learn about the legends, honor their legacy, or simply enjoy the sounds of modern-day jazz.
Firstly, the American Jazz Museum is dedicated to public service and collaborative efforts to expand the influence, awareness, and appreciation of jazz among the widest demographic of people across the Kansas City region, as well as among those based in various locations worldwide. Since the birth of America’s only indigenous art form and its journey across the globe. Secondly, Certain cities have put distinctive stamps on their sound, history, and development. Kansas City is one of the greatest purveyors of jazz. It continues to offer fertile ground for music to thrive.
The Blue Room
In the 1930s, the Street Hotel located at 18th & The Paseo was known as a safe place for African American travelers. Included in The Negro Motorist Green Book, it’s where Jackie Robinson lived when he was in town. The hotel’s famous nightclub was called “The Blue Room.” Named after the famous lounge, our jazz club is both an exhibit and a venue that provides an intimate setting for performances from the best local and national jazz talent.
Originally named the Star Theater, the Gem was built in 1912 by the Shriner and Powelson Amusement Company as a silent movie palace serving Kansas City’s African American population. It was renamed the Gem in 1913, and by the time motion pictures could talk in 1929, it had become an established fixture on 18th Street.
Good To Know
Personal photographs within the Museum seem absolutely welcomed. However, if you have any commercial purposes (not for memories or social media), review the photo and film guidelines on our website and fill out the application if necessary.
Are wheelchairs available?
Yes, there is a wheelchair available, free of charge. That is located in the coat check behind the visitor services desk.
Safety Rules about COVID-19
The health and safety of our guests and staff bear American Jazz Museum’s top priority. They are in partnership with the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, in step with our community safety pledges. They welcome visitors to the Museums at 18th & Vine with increased precautions. Currently, masks or proof of vaccination are not required. If you aren’t feeling well, please do not visit the museums. Purchased tickets can be redeemed at a future date.