Saturday, July 7th was a jam-packed day at the 2019 Essence Festival. Although crowds of people headed to the convention center to check out vendors, other attendees made sure to be at the Essence Fashion House located at the historic Gallier Hall to listen to celebrities and influencers speak at the panels.

The second panel of the day entitled, “Hollywood Meets Fashion: The Collaboration Between The Silver Screen & The Runway” was moderated by journalist, Lola Ogunnaike. The TV anchor was joined by two household names, Cynthia Erivo and Quincy Brown. Cynthia Erivo is known for her astonishing 2015 Broadway revival performance of The Color Purple. The Brit talent’s performance in the starring role of Celie led her to win the 2016 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical. Model and actor Quincy Brown stars in FOX’s musical drama, Star.

Erivo and Brown talked about their style and shed light on how their parents felt about them pursuing careers in the entertainment industry. Erivo says that her mom always knew she was a performer. “My mother thought I would be a singer or doctor. She always sat back and watched my progression,” she added. Though Brown is the son of late model Kim Porter and singer Al B Sure, he never imagined sharing his famous parents’ Hollywood aspirations. Porter, however, always knew her son was meant for the limelight. “My mom knew that there was something in me. She knew that I was a natural, even though I was very passionate about playing baseball,” Brown said. While both of their careers may have turned out differently from what they expected, they both expressed that they are truly grateful to be where they are now.

As for what’s next for the two, Erivo revealed that she is currently working on a new film, where she will star as Harriet Tubman. Brown is gearing up to release his first EP and will be collaborating with more fashion brands later this year.

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