Comedian, actor Kevin Hart to perform at Essence

NEW ORLEANS, LA

Organizers say Hart, hot on the heels of his starring role in last weekend's No. 1 film, "Think Like a Man," will debut his comedic talents during the festival scheduled for July 6-8 at the Superdome. Hart joins a lineup that includes Aretha Franklin, Mary J. Blige, Charlie Wilson, Ledisi, Fantasia, and Eve.

The festival drew more than 422,000 attendees last year.

Essence Fest began as a one-time event celebrating the 25th anniversary of Essence magazine. The festival is organized by Essence Communications Inc., a media company with a presence in publishing, live events and online services.

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