Mary J. Blige

Mary J. Blige, Keyshia Cole, & Fantasia to Play ESSENCE Festival

Some of music’s biggest voices are headed to New Orleans. Mary J. Blige, Keyshia Cole, and Fantasia have been announced as performers for this year’s ESSENCE Music Festival.

Celebrating “The Power of Our Voice,” the 18th annual event will be held at the Louisiana Superdome during the weekend of July 6-8. This year’s lineup boasts veterans and newcomers including Aretha Franklin, Charlie Wilson, SWV, Dru Hill, Ledisi, Stephanie Mills, Raheem DeVaughn, Estelle, Goapele, Vivian Green, Kindred the Family Soul, Luke James, Eric Roberson, The Stylistics, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, Bridget Kelly, The Original Pinettes Brass Band, The Stooges Brass Band, and Khris Royal & Dark Matter.

The legendary Aretha Franklin, who performed at the Festival in 1995 and 2005, will also be honored with “The Power Award.”

“The theme of this year’s Essence Music Festival celebrates our most powerful voices. Whether it’s Aretha Franklin, The Queen of Soul commanding respect or Rep. Maxine Waters demanding better conditions for our community, these powerful voices resonate with our audience like no other,” said Michelle Ebanks, president, Essence Communications Inc. “As we all face a new reality in these critical times, we want to inspire our Festival-goers to leave this year’s Festival even more resilient and motivated so that they can be empowered to create change in their own communities.”

Weekend ticket packages are available now.