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Upcoming Events

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ARISE Academy Benefit…

Sep 22 - 22, 2014
ARISE Academy is partnering with Bayou Kayak for a fundraiser. Rent a… more

Irvin Mayfield's Jazz…

Sep 22 - 22, 2014
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Jon Cleary & the…

Sep 22 - 29, 2014
Join us for Jon Cleary & the Absolute Monster Gentlemen. more

Mark of the Feminine

Sep 22 - Oct 4, 2014
Curator Regine Basha's Mark of the Feminine is the first in a series of… more

New Orleans Fringe…

Sep 22 - Oct 15, 2014
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The Victory Belles…

Sep 22 - Nov 19, 2014
Noted for their close harmonies and synchronized dance steps, the Andrews… more

The Victory Belles…

Sep 22, 2014 - Jun 24, 2015
Noted for their close harmonies and synchronized dance steps, the Andrews… more

“Bites of Bywater”

Sep 23 - 24, 2014
Dishcrawl, a national start-up founded on the premise that communities can be… more

Family Yoga at Longue…

Sep 23 - 23, 2014
Mothers, fathers or caregivers and children 3 months to crawling can join in on… more

Irvin Mayfield Jazz…

Sep 23 - 23, 2014
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Kinder Garden:…

Sep 23 - 30, 2014
Play, learn and grow in this hands-on introduction to the world of gardens for… more

Kinder Garden:…

Sep 23 - 30, 2014
Play, learn and grow in this hands-on introduction to the world of gardens for… more

Maple Leaf Bar…

Sep 23 - 30, 2014
Join us for live entertainment featuring the Grammy Award winning ReBirth Brass… more

Standing in the…

Sep 23 - Nov 25, 2014
"Standing in the Shadows (no more)" is a series of narrative quilting… more

Standing in the…

Sep 23 - Nov 25, 2014
"Standing in the Shadows (No More)" is a series of narrative quilting… more

Trinity Artist Series…

Sep 23 - Oct 7, 2014
Join us for "Organ & Labyrinth" and candlelight with Albinas… more

Funk Monkey featuring…

Sep 24 - 24, 2014
Join us for Funk Monkey featuring members of Bonerama. more

Grammy Award-winning…

Sep 24 - 24, 2014
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Irvin Mayfield's Jazz…

Sep 24 - 24, 2014
Join us at The Irvin Mayfield Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for… more

Pub Quiz

Sep 24 - 24, 2014
Test your knowledge of an array of topics, including World War II, at the… more

ARISE Academy Benefit…

Sep 22 - 22, 2014
ARISE Academy is partnering with Bayou Kayak for a fundraiser. Rent a… 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.