NEW YORK -- Multi-platinum superstar Jennifer Hudson will make her debut Festival performance, joined by R&B/Funk icon Chaka Khan and the reunion of New Edition at the 2011 ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL celebrating the "Roots of R&B" July 1, 2 and 3 in New Orleans.
In addition, Kem, Miguel, Naughty By Nature, Doug E. Fresh, Marsha Ambrosius, Mavis Staples, Eric Benet, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Trin-i-tee 5:7 and BrianCourtney Wilson have been added to the previously announced line-up, which includes Kanye West, Mary J. Blige, Trey Songz, Jill Scott, Charlie Wilson, Boyz II Men, Fantasia, George Clinton, Macy Gray and more.
"The ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL is bringing together the world's best entertainers representing all genres of R&B -- from the inimitable Jennifer Hudson to the iconic Chaka Khan," said Michelle Ebanks, President, ESSENCE Communications Inc. "We are celebrating the Roots of R&B this Fourth of July weekend! From the powerhouse performances on the main stage to the more intimate jam sessions in the Superlounges, the ESSENCE MUSIC FESTIVAL offers blues, funk, classics and neo-soul that our audience craves to renew their spirit and connect to their joy."
Now in its 17th year, the ultimate destination for entertainment and inspiration hosted over 400,000 attendees last year.
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, Beyonce, 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.