Although the year isn’t over just yet, the ESSENCE Festival is already gearing up for the new year with the announcement of its initial lineup, headlined by Diana Ross and Mary J. Blige.
The 23rd annual event will return to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on June 30-July 2. So far, the lineup includes a star-studded roster of artists, like Chaka Khan, Solange, Teyana Taylor, Doug E. Fresh, Erykah Badu, India.Arie, Jazmine Sullivan, John Legend, and June’s Diary.
Other artists on the bill thus far range from hip-hop to R&B with a whole lot of soul in between. The roster also features Lalah Hathaway, Lizzo, Master P, Michel’le, Moses Sumney, Ro James, Shaggy, Sir the Baptist, The Jones Girls Feat. Shirley Jones, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Tweet, and Yuna. Additional artists will be announced soon.
“This year’s Festival lineup puts women at the forefront of an incredible weekend of entertainment featuring more than 40 of the world’s most gifted artists and performers,” said ESSENCE President Michelle Ebanks. “It is an honor to welcome the inimitable Diana Ross to the Festival for the first time. Plus, Festival veteran Mary J. Blige is back to share Strength of a Woman with her most passionate fans.”
This year’s ESSENCE Festival featured several highlights, including performances by Kendrick Lamar, Mariah Carey, Maxwell, and Puff Daddy & the Family.
Just in time for Christmas, weekend ticket packages go on sale Friday (Dec. 16) with prices starting at $126.