Home IT management It’s A Family Affair: Mary J. Blige’s Strength Of A Woman Summit Empowers Women In Business

It’s A Family Affair: Mary J. Blige’s Strength Of A Woman Summit Empowers Women In Business

0
It’s A Family Affair: Mary J. Blige’s Strength Of A Woman Summit  Empowers Women In Business

[ad_1]

When Mary J. Blige debuted in 1992, launching her first album titled What’s the 441? she solidified her title as the Queen of hip hop soul, the amalgamation of R&B and hip hop. Throughout her career, Blige’s fans have resonated with her raw vocals and songs that often detail her struggles. Despite the ebbs and flows of her career, she has displayed fortitude and perseverance. She has been active in her mental and spiritual healing, so it was germane for her to launch her inaugural Strength of a Woman Festival and Summit that focused on panels, speakers, and events centered on the empowering of Black women in areas of wellness, tech, beauty, financial literacy, and business development.

Now kicking off its second iteration starting May 11-14 in Atlanta’s State Farm Arena in partnership with Pepsi, Live Nation, and Blige’s team consisted of Nicole Jackson, VP of MJB Inc., and Ashaunna Ayars of the Ayars Agency.

This year’s event boasts an array of intriguing personalities and celebrities like Grammy winner Robert Glasper, Kenny Burns, Lauryn Hill, Summer Walker, Lucky Daye, Muni Long, and more. Attendees can enjoy #HipHop50 celebration and performances by Blige with her peers titled the MJB B-Sides set, reports Variety.

“I’m so excited to bring our Strength of a Woman Festival & Summit back to Atlanta for its second year,” said Blige. “Having the opportunity to continue to uplift, inspire, and build amongst a community of women is the reason why we created this festival. I’m so grateful for all of the support from our performers and participants and of course Live Nation Urban, Pepsi and our additional partners who are committed to celebrating and creating community for Black women.”

Jackson included, “The popularity and impact of the inaugural Strength of a Woman Festival and Summit successfully showed how and why Black women are the blueprint for cultural relevancy and inclusion. Being able to look back and see the global reach the festival had through our live stream and billions of media impressions is confirmation that we are filling a void in the festival space. Mary, Ashaunna and myself are overjoyed to be back in Atlanta again and look forward to continued expansion in our programming and partnerships,” reports Variety.

Blige shared her expectations for the 2023 Strength of a Woman Festival and Summit and why she believes the event is pertinent to uplift her community.

Yolanda Baruch: This is the second year of the Strength of a Woman Festival and Summit in the Atlanta State Farm arena. What can attendees expect this year?

Mary J. Blige: Amazing entertainment, performances, a lot of comedy, panels with women speaking and helping each other. Pepsi and I launched the Strength of a Woman Festival together, and they’ve showed up and showed out. We’ll announce that we have a Strength of a Woman scholarship program and many things that will uplift and encourage women; it’s a big women’s event, so it was really special.

Yolanda Baruch: How important was it to have the support of brand partners like Pepsi, who helped to launch the summit last year?

Mary J. Blige: I mean, it’s extremely important to have a heavy hitter partner like Pepsi supporting you, and they have been super supportive. We don’t know if the festival could be this successful if it weren’t for them. I hope and pray that we have them again, it’s a huge name, and they bring and give so much; it’s amazing.

Baruch: What made you decide to launch this event initially?

Blige: It was a team effort. My team and Pepsi, of course, it was something that was an idea of mine, and I brought it to Pepsi. I’ve watched myself at festivals and concerts and how so many women respect and live off my every word, and it’s shocking to me that so many people love you that much. I said, ‘Why don’t we give them something instead of just a concert? Why don’t we give them an evening, a four-day event, where all women are being supported.’ We touch every woman, and we let them know, because of us, everybody exists. So we have men that are coming, comedians, you have everybody coming. I said, ‘Why don’t I give all these fans something bigger than just me for one night, give them all the people that I love, all the comedians, the women that I love, who are strong, who are sitting on the panels and helping other women with their stories of how they rise from the ashes and triumphs. So that was the reason, just seeing how I affect people and sharing with them. I’m a listener of other women and admire other women, so that’s why I did it. When I bought [the idea] to Pepsi, they loved it as well, and now, it’s bigger than I can even imagine.

Baruch: Of course. Have you talked to anybody about their reactions from those who attended last year?

Blige: People were blown away. Every person, online and offline, [were saying] ‘Oh, my god, please do this again. We need this. We’re so glad that you did this. You were the one who’s supposed to do this.’ I felt in my spirit that’s what it was [like] when the idea came to me. They were so inspired, ‘Oh my god, we learned so much from the panel; we had a good time at the comedy show. Wow. It was so inspiring to hear such and such saying that night.’ It’s sincerely from the heart; I just gave people a piece of what I love.

Baruch: How would you like the summit to expand in the future?

Blige: We brought it to Atlanta, but I would love to bring it to New York for just one year (she laughs) because it’s my home. I think it would go crazy if we did that.

Baruch: You have worn many hats; you serve as executive producer for Real Love and Strength Of A Woman Lifetime Original Movies, premiering June 10 and 17 through your production banner, Blue Butterfly. As a Grammy-winning singer and an Oscar-nominated actress, what made you decide to foray into producing?

Blige: Acting and reading the credits on certain movies, being in the world, and wanting a piece of it [and] to experience something different. Because of my experience, [it] made me [believe] I could produce a movie, executive produce, or direct a movie.

Baruch: Are you thinking of directing in the future?

Blige: I might direct a couple of times because being the person that has to deal with the directors, I don’t want to deal with other actors and actresses because it’s a hard job directing. Directors have a hard job because they have to deal with so many people with different personalities and [other things]. But I will probably do it once or twice and see how it feels.

For more details, visit www.soawfestival.com.

[ad_2]

Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here