Spring may just have arrived, but the lineup is steady heating up for this summer’s ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans, as we are honored to announce the speakers who will be giving us life on July 4th weekend.

ESSENCE Festival Artist Lineup 2016

Gracing the ESSENCE Empowerment Experience Stage for the 22nd annual Festival will be a who’s who of fierce women known for running their game, whether it’s acting, dance or supermodeldom. Among those sharing words of wisdom will be Tyra Banks, ballet star Misty Copeland, Tony-winning actress Patina Miller, best-selling author Terry McMillan and life coach Iyanla Vanzant.

Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks, Cookie Johnson and Rev. Al Sharpton will be also be spreading their empowering messages at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center July 1-3. Bringing even more inspiration will be gospel artists Travis Greene, Tasha Paige Lockhart, Kierra Sheard and Yolanda Adams, who will lead an all-star tribute to the Clark Sisters.

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“The ESSENCE Empowerment Experience Stage remains the heartbeat of Festival weekend with its diverse and impactful programming aimed at enlightening and inspiring our community,” said ESSENCE Editor-in-Chief Vanessa K. De Luca. “The current social climate has brought to light highly important issues, and we plan to continue these conversations at this year’s ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans. Not only will our programming emphasize topics such as love and relationships, personal finance and entrepreneurship, but we will also take a deeper look into our community’s most pressing political concerns to prepare ourselves for the upcoming presidential election.”

Click through for a full list of speakers, and be sure to check back for updates.

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