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Multicultural Festival

ESSENCE Festival
June 30-July 3, 2016

Essence Fest
Event Details
When: June 30-July 3, 2016
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome
Book a Room: Click Here

Get ready for the best in R&B, hip-hop, jazz, blues, and more! New Orleans is proud to once again host Essence Fest, the nation’s premier showcase for contemporary African American music and culture.


Since the early 1990s Essence Magazine, the distinguished lifestyle magazine for African American women, has chosen New Orleans for its annual three-day event. Each year, the festival brings in the best performers and entertainers in the country, as well as a series of seminars created to empower African American men and women.

This year’s weekend event will rock with more DJs, artists, performers and comedy than ever before!


Previous artists at Essence Fest have included Beyoncé, Prince, Alicia Keys, Mary J. Blige, and more! This year’s event brings in even more music legends to perform across five different stages.

Here a just a few of this year’s headliners:

  • Mariah Carey
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Jeremih
  • Ciara
  • Tyrese Gibson
  • Charlie Wilson
  • Leon Bridges
  • Faith Evans
  • Kelly Price
  • Maxwell
  • Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds
  • Lalah Hathaway

Some of New Orleans’ most famous performers will include:

  • New Breed Brass Band
  • Preservation Hall Jazz Band

Check out Essence Magazine’s website for a full list of this year’s lineup.


In addition to hearing live music from these world famous performers, you can participate in the 2016 Essence Empowerment Experience. Essence Fest is bringing in some of the most knowledgeable experts to share their ideas and tips to pursue your personal success.

Some of this year’s acclaimed speakers include:

Visit the Essence Festival Speakers page for more information on this year’s experts and seminars.

Arts and Crafts

Essence Fest also gives African American artists, writers, craftsmen, culinary artists, businesspeople and others a chance to show off their talents and sell their work.

All vendors will have displays set up in different locations around the Superdome and park areas that will be temporarily turned into outdoor markets. You can expect to see variety of quality fine art and crafts from clothing and jewelry, to collectable paintings and sculpture. All art displays and demonstrations will represent the rich culture developed from all over the African Diaspora.


Doors typically open for nightly events at the Superdome at 6 p.m., Friday through Sunday. Weekend tickets and VIP packages for Essence Festival are now on sale!

See Ticket Master or the Essence Fest Tickets page to purchase tickets and get more information on packages.

Essence Day Party Series

You can also purchase tickets for DJ Day Parties at the Sugar Mill (1021 Convention Center Blvd), from Friday-Sunday from 1 p.m.- 5 p.m. Essence Day Parties have previously featured celebrity DJs, like Funkmaster Flex, Spinderella, Biz Markie, and DJ Drama, as well as special festival guests, cocktails, and energetic crowds.

Tickets can be purchased for the entire weekend, or for just one day. Single night tickets will be on sale in the weeks leading up to the Festival. General admission is $25 per day and $75 for the VIP experience. Prices will increase at the door.

For Day Party Admission and VIP packages visit the Essence Fest Ticket page.


This year’s event brings the first ever ESSENCE Expo Experience. Topics include beauty and style as well as power and money, with live expert tutorials, free consultations and more! Access is free but registration is required, so be sure to sign up for your spot in advance. Click here to register.

Day of Service

On Thursday, June 30th before the major festivities begin, ESSENCE Fest has organized a day of service for festival goers to volunteer together. The day will be dedicated to Youth, Mentorship and Education in New Orleans. All volunteers receive a free t-shirt and other giveaways. Click here to register.


There are also many conveniently located hotels are offering special deals for Fest-goers. For a detailed list of participating hotels go to

There are more updates on the Essence Fest lineup and schedule to come! For more information on the event, check out the festival’s website, or follow Essence on Twitter or Facebook.

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