The 2017 Essence Festival was nothing short of amazing. Being that many of our close friends are native to the wonderful city of New Orleans, there were high expectations for this Annual event as well as the city in general. With sponsors such as Coca-cola, Ford, McDonald’s, and Walmart just to name a few, Essence gave everyone who attended the4-dayy Festival a feeling excellence, pride, resilience, and if nothing else an amazing talented line-up of performances.
The first day started with many screening of the new movie and shows set to debut this year such as “Kidnapped” Starring the one and only Halle Berry, “Girls Trip” starring the incomparable Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, Regina Hall, Kofi Siriboe and Tiffany Haddish. “Snowfall”, the new series created by John Singleton debuting this month on FX hosted a screening with actors Damson Idris & Isaiah John. The Hit HBO Series Insecure also hosted a season 2 screening with creator and star Issa Rae, Yvonne Orji & Jay Ellis
As the people poured in the city on Friday there were showstopping performances such as India Irie, Ro James, Kelly Price, John Legend, and the legendary Diana Ross! Now, this was only the beginning, the Crescent City was just starting turning up the heat as the days continued.
Saturday The Superdome was on fire with mind-blowing performances from Monica, Jazmine Sullivan, Jill Scott, Chaka Khan, and Mary J Blige.
Closing out the weekend on Sunday if at any point you thought there was going to be a doll moment you were wrong, Solange came to the Main Stage and gave what was nothing short of an amazingly energetic funky performance that empowered the essence of why we were all there! The Super Lounge hosted the comeback of all come back’s, Tamika Scott, Kandi Burruss, Tameka (Tiny) Harris, and Latocha Scott reunited for a 60 minute set for the first time in Xscape’s history. It was as if we never left the 90s as we enjoyed the smooth R&B tones over those hip-hop beats. They also gave light on an up-and-coming new project with Mona Scott Young. The Press Lounge had Q&A’s with such celebrities as Jasmine Burke (Saints and Sinners/Star), Chante Moore, Junes Diary, Daley, Sir The Baptist, Tweet, Shaggy and Napoleon Da Legend who shared their experiences about perform during this year’s event and shared all of the great things they are working on..
Chance the Rapper came out and close the show and literally shut the Mercedes-Benz Superdome down with such an enlightened perspective on such a young mind and proving that the essence of our culture is not lost on the new generation. With all these many factors nothing left can be said but Thank You Essence Festival and the city of New Orleans as well as its many sponsors and see you next year Essence Festival 2018.
Video Courtesy of Spencer Clements
Video Courtesy of Zach Simmons
Chance The Rapper photos -The New Orleans Advocate