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17th Annual Martin…

Mar 5 - 7, 2015
Join us for the 17th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Art… more

Andrew Jackson: Hero…

Mar 5 - 29, 2015
THNOC's exhibition tracks Jackson's rise from humble beginnings to immortality… more

Artist Spotlight…

Mar 5 - 31, 2015
New Orleans-based woodturning artist Tom Dunne will be the featured artist in… more

Ashe Cultural Arts…

Mar 5 - 5, 2015
Please join us for the film screening of Por Aqui Paso Chavez, a documentary of… more

Edgar Degas: The…

Mar 5 - May 24, 2015
Featuring drawings, prints, sculpture, and photographs, all from a single… more

Jim Roche: Cultural…

Mar 5 - Jul 12, 2015
Born in 1943, Jim Roche received a BA from Florida State University (1961)… more

Ogden After Hours…

Mar 5 - 5, 2015
Join us for Ogden After Hours for Colin Lake. more

Tennessee Williams:…

Mar 5 - May 31, 2015
Tennessee Williams was one of the most admired playwrights of the 20th century.… more

The Columns Hotel…

Mar 5 - 26, 2015
The Historical Columns Hotel with its "sophiscicated atmosphere" and… more

The New Orleans…

Mar 5 - Nov 18, 2015
Marvel Universe LIVE! will captivate audiences with an authentic and original… more

The Trio feat. Johnny…

Mar 5 - 5, 2015
Join us for The Trio: Johnny Vidacovich, Nigel Hall, and George Porter Jr. … more

Friends of the…

Mar 6 - 6, 2015
Local jazz band, the Panorama Jazz Band, will bookend the final concert of… more

International…

Mar 6 - 7, 2015
Now in its seventh year, the New Orleans International Children's Film… more

Jefferson Arts…

Mar 6 - 15, 2015
Mrs. Stancliffe's Rose Cottage Bed & Breakfast has been successful for many… more

Lauren Sturm - Bayou…

Mar 6 - 6, 2015
Performs solo acoustic piano. more

Maple Leaf Bar…

Mar 6 - 6, 2015
Join us for live entertainment featuring Groovesect. more

Mark Steinmetz: South

Mar 6 - May 10, 2015
Mark Steinmetz lives and works in Athens, Georgia. His work transcends the… more

Music at the Mint…

Mar 6 - 6, 2015
Billie performs mainly in an avant-garde, free style painting expansive… more

Opening Reception -…

Mar 6 - 6, 2015
Join us  for a free opening reception for Radcliffe Bailey: Recent Works… more

Ponchatoula Antique…

Mar 6 - 8, 2015
Featuring-Antique Collectibles Booth, Fine Arts & Crafts Booth, Food Booth,… more

17th Annual Martin…

Mar 5 - 7, 2015
Join us for the 17th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemorative Art… more

Grammy Award-Winning Superstar USHER Joins the 2011 ESSENCE Music Festival

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contacts:

Dana Baxter, ESSENCE
212-522-1634
dbaxter@essence.com

Sheila Harris, ESSENCE 
212-522-1089
sharris@essence.com

GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING SUPERSTAR
USHER
JOINS THE 2011 ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL
OCCASION MARKS FIRST TIME USHER TO HEADLINE
THE ULTIMATE WEEKEND-LONG EXPERIENCE
CONNECTING MUSIC, CULTURE AND COMMUNITY


(May 17, 2011) NEW YORK, N.Y.—ESSENCE is proud to announce that multi-platinum selling, chart- topping, Grammy award-winning powerhouse USHER will headline the 2011 ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL being held July 1, 2, and 3 in New Orleans. Joining an already stellar, best-in-class line-up that includes Chaka Kahn, Jennifer Hudson, Jill Scott, Kanye West, Mary J. Blige and New Edition, USHER will headline the main stage of the Superdome on opening night, Friday, July 1. Known for his mesmerizing live stage show, intricate choreography and catalogue of Top 40 Hits, USHER will perform an electrifying set, allowing Festival-goers a chance to share their 4th of July weekend with one of the most iconic artists of the decade.

Although the chart-topping recording artist has a long standing relationship with ESSENCE, this year marks the first time USHER will grace the stage as a headliner at the ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL, the largest African- American music and culture event in the U.S. Attracting an estimated 400,000 attendees, the 17th annual Essence Music Festival continues to be the only music and empowerment festival in the U.S., in addition to a hallmark of New Orleans tourism.

“We are honored to bring the incredible USHER to the ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL to headline opening night,” says ESSENCE Communications President Michelle Ebanks. “Fans can look forward to an incredible line-up this 4th of July weekend-- with more than 40 of the world’s best performers on 5 stages – as a once in a lifetime experience!”

Alsoujoining the line-up are Morris Day & The Time, Loose Ends, Noel Gourdin, and Timothy Bloom.

The 2011 ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL night-by-night line-up (updated as of 5/18) is as follows:

Friday, July 1: Usher, Charlie Wilson, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Boyz II Men, Macy Gray, Dwele, Alexander O’Neal and Cherrelle, Mint Condition, Soul Rebels Brass Band, Tank, Miguel, Noel Gourdin, Mavis Staples, Irma Thomas

Saturday, July 2: Kanye West, Jill Scott, Chaka Khan, El Debarge, Eric Benet, Timothy Bloom, Morris Day & The Time, Shamarr Allen and The Underdawgs, Stephanie Mills, Charmaine Neville Band, Naughty by Nature, To Be Continued Brass Band

Sunday, July 3: Mary J Blige, New Edition, Trey Songz, Kem, Loose Ends, Hal Linton, Kourtney Heart, George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, Rebirth Brass Band, Kelly Price, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Trin-i-Tee 5:7, Brian Courtney Wilson, MC Lyte, Doug E. Fresh, Hot 8 Brass Band

What began in 1995 as a one-time event to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of ESSENCE magazine has now grown into one of the country's "Top 10 Leading Brand Events" by Advertising Age. The ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL is the nation's largest annual gathering of African-American music and culture. Throughout its history, the Festival has featured an array of performers including Alicia Keys, Al Green, Aretha Franklin, Beyoncé, Chaka Khan, Destiny's Child, Earth, Wind & Fire, Gladys Knight, LL Cool J, Jamie Foxx, John Legend, The Isley Brothers, Lionel Richie, Luther Vandross, Maxwell, The O'Jays, Prince, Stevie Wonder, Toni Braxton, Patti LaBelle and Yolanda Adams, among others.


For information about ticket sales, accommodations and the latest updates and to sign up for the ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL newsletter, visit http://www.essencemusicfestival.com. Join the Festival community: follow us on Twitter @essencemusic #EMF2011 and become a fan of 2011 Essence Music Festival on Facebook.


The presenting sponsor for the 2011 Essence Music Festival is Coca-Cola. Major sponsors include Coors Light, CoverGirl Queen Collection, Ford, McDonald's, Olay, Pantene, Tide, U.S. Army, Verizon and Wal-Mart; official sponsors include CNN, My Black is Beautiful, State Farm, TNT and Visa Pre-Paid.


The 2011 ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL is executive produced by Essence Festivals LLC, a division of Essence Communications Inc. (ECI).


ABOUT ESSENCE COMMUNICATIONS INC.:

Essence Communications Inc. (ECI) is the number one media and communications company dedicated to African-American women. With a multi-platform presence in publishing, live events, and online, the Essence brand is "Where Black Women Come First". The company's flagship publication, ESSENCE magazine, is the preeminent lifestyle magazine for African-American women; generating brand extensions such as the Essence Music Festival, ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood, Window on Our Women (WOW I & II) and Smart Beauty I, II & III consumer insights, the Essence Book Club, Essence.com, and ventures in digital media (mobile, television and VOD). For more than 40 years, ESSENCE magazine, which has a brand reach of over 8 million, has been the leading source of cutting-edge information relating to every area of African-American women's lives. Additional information about ECI and ESSENCE is available at www.essence.com.