Essence Festival is playing it safe and hosting their annual festival virtually.

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Jazmine Sullivan, DJ DNice, Tank, Kirk Franklin, Michelle Williams and DJ Khaled and Friends, will all take the virtual stage.

Other appearances include Mary J. Blige, The Breakfast Club’s Angela Yee, Miss Lawrence, Supacent, New Orleans born entrepreneur Jesseca Dupart, who is known for her Kaleidoscope hair products.


“As a live experience, the Essence Festival normally attracts more than 500,000 attendees annually during July 4th weekend in New Orleans — but last year, we made the necessary decision to shift our multi-day celebration to an innovative virtual format due to COVID-19,” said Latraviette Smith-Wilson, Essence chief strategy & engagement officer, in a statement. 

“Essence Festival was the first of its kind and scale to be executed virtually during the pandemic, and our team worked tirelessly to deliver the content, programming and resources that our community desired. As a result, the festival provided much-needed, only-at-Essence content and experiences that inspired, entertained, informed and empowered—resulting in  45+ million full-stream views of 2020 Festival content to date.”

“This year, we are thrilled to bring forth another exciting talent line-up, curated programming, and a new hybrid experience that will directly touch the people of New Orleans and Louisiana while also further extending our reach, engagement and impact via enhanced digital, technology and streaming capabilities to connect more of our community in the U.S. and across the diaspora,” she continued.

According to the press release, New Orleans natives and first responders will be able to participate in-person over two weekends — June 25 to 27 and July 2 to 4.

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