The 2016 ESSENCE Festival is officially underway. And we’ve rounded up flicks of your faves out and about in New Orleans to kick off the festivities. More inside…
Get ready for a weekend long of partying down in New Orleans for this year’s ESSENCE Festival. In case you couldn’t make it, we’ll be following your faves during the festival to bring you everything that’s going down.
The annual festival kicked off with the “Apple R&B Rising” event (presented by Coca-Cola) at the Kingsway Mansion last night. And it brought out the entire “Survivor’s Remorse” cast — Tichina Arnold, Jessie Usher, Teyonah Parris, RonReaco Lee and Erica Ash.
The hit STARZ show will return for season 3 starting July 24th.
Love those heels Tichina!
Not only does Erica star in “Survivor’s Remorse,” she also stars in Kevin Hart’s “Real Husbands of Hollywood” and “Shades of Blue” with Jennifer Lopez.
Here’s a clip of the cast toasting it up during the dinner below:
Dinnertime! At #EssenceFestival2016 #EricaAsh #naughtytomboy #wwead #SurvivorsRemorse #MChuck
A video posted by Erica Ash (@theericaash) on Jun 30, 2016 at 7:49pm PDT
Before hitting up the event:
Erica ran into her cast mates, including Mike Epps, and radio personality Big Tigger in those N.O. streets.
Back at the event…
After showing off her vintage style at the 2016 BET Awards, soulful songstress Andra Day stayed true to her chosen trend rocking a floral printed jumpsuit, black boots and a purple head wrap. She was tapped to serenade the audience with her vocals.
Andra snapped it up with R&B newbie Ro James, who’s song “Permission” is burning up the radio waves, for an “us-ie.”
Veteran actress Lynn Whitfield, who stars on Oprah’s new series “Greenleaf,” was decked out in her lemon printed top and black skirt. Everybody likes a lil lemonade here and there….
Our girl Bevy Smith kept it cute and curvy in a floral printed bodycon and strappy sandals.
“Underground” co-stars Aldis Hodge and Amirah Vann were in the mix. Aldis is gearing up for a role in the highly-anticipated film Hidden Figures that stars Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae.
R&B singer Eric Benet jetted to New Orleans after hitting up the 2016 BET Awards.
R&B singers Kenny Lattimore and Nicci Gilbert were all smiles during the Apple Music event.
DJ D Nice is also making moves, jetting it to ESSENCE Fest after hitting the party scene in L.A. last weekend for the BET Awards festivities.
Andra Day tore the house down as she went through a few of her tracks backed by a live band. She’s scheduled to hit the mainstage Sunday, July 3rd.
Actor Malik Yoba, who sings occasionally, rocked the stage alongside Sonic Boom.
Radio/TV personality Bevy Smith hit the Coca-Cola stage to chop it up with the “Underground” cast about their new series after wrapping up its first season. The WGN America series has been renewed for a 2nd season and will return in 2017.
We’ve also gathered up a few flicks of YBFers making their rounds in New Orleans. Check ’em:
We see you Eric!
Hmm…will Andra make a cameo in a new Will Packer produced film? Time will tell…
R&B songstress Justine Skye is out here slaying the NOLA streets in all white. GORGE.
Former “The Real” co-host Tamar Braxton is on the ESSENCE Fest scene with her pastor Bishop T.D. Jakes.
Tamar’s former co-hosts are also in the mix:
A video posted by The Real Talk Show (@therealdaytime) on Jun 30, 2016 at 5:00pm PDT
Tamera Mowry Housley, Adrienne Bailon, Loni Love and Jeannie Mai had fun throwing beads on Bourbon Street.
A photo posted by The Real Talk Show (@therealdaytime) on Jun 30, 2016 at 8:30pm PDT
A photo posted by tameramowrytwo (@tameramowrytwo) on Jul 1, 2016 at 8:38am PDT
And we know Tamar ran into at least one of her former co-hosts. The “BFV” star and Tamera flew on the same flight on their way to ESSENCE Fest.
Loni lucked up and nabbed a photo-op with directress Ava DuVernay. She gushed, “When the director Ava Duvernay tells you to do duck lips.. You do it.. Check her out Friday @essencefest #queensugar”
By the way, Ava’s new series “Queen Sugar” (executive produced by Oprah) will debut at 10pm EST on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 6-7 on OWN. It then will air regularly at 10pm EST Wednesdays for the remainder of the season.
“Real Housewives of Atlanta” star Cynthia Baily, who officially separated from her husband Peter Thomas, and Chef Roble got in some friendly cuddle time back at the hotel.
“Hit The Floor” actor Rob Riley bumped into comedian Ron G on Bourbon Street. Rob also hit up the Apple Music event and chopped it up with Mailk Yoba.
Meanwhile, Common is brushing up on his drummer skills before he rocks the mainstage tomorrow (July 2nd).
Peep a few clips of the Chi-town rapper in action below:
Tell @therealmaryjblige she should hire me despite the hate from @djdummy #essencefest
A video posted by Common (@common) on Jul 1, 2016 at 5:57am PDT
Tell @nas and @iamdiddy , I got this! Give me a shot. #essencefest #hatemenow
A video posted by Common (@common) on Jul 1, 2016 at 6:14am PDT
Stay locked to TheYBF.com for more from the 2016 ESSENCE Festival!
Photos: Bevy’s IG/Tamar’s IG/Andra’s IG/Mike’s IG/Justine’s IG/Loni’s IG/Eric’s IG/Rob’s IG/Tamera’s IG/Roble’s IG/Andrienne’s Snap