Tag Archives: Women

Watch the Essence Black Women In Music Event Live Here Right Now

Tonight, Essence magazine is kicking off the Grammy Awards weekend with its 6th annual Black Women In Music event, and you can watch it live right here.

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The event heralds the accomplishments of both emerging and established artists and influencers in the industry, and this year’s show will celebrate the best and brightest moments in Black music over Essence’s 45-year history. Honoring the incredibly talented Jill Scott and featuring performances by Chaka Khan, Brandy, MC Lyte, and Lianne La Havas, the concert will represent each of the classic eras in music: the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, and beyond.

For all of the details on Essence’s 2015 Black Women In Music event, visit essence.com.

RELATED: Kerry Washington Gets Ultra Glam Inside the March Issue of InStyle

Jessica Chastain Inside the New InStyle: “There Are Two Kinds Of Roles For Women”

As we gear up for Awards Season (kicking off Thursday with the announcement of Golden Globe nominees), one name we’re likely to hear a lot is Jessica Chastain.

The star of Interstellar (in theaters now) and A Most Violent Year (in theaters Dec. 31) is known for her red carpet prowess as much as she is for the strong female characters she plays (Maya of 2012’s Zero Dark Thirty comes to mind). But inside the January InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download Friday, Dec. 12, the 37-year-old tells us finding such diverse, strong female characters hasn’t been easy.

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When first embarking on her acting career, she found that “there were two kinds of roles for women,” she tells writer Emma Jane Unsworth. “You are either the girlfriend, incredibly beautiful but not much going on, or the victim, like the weird neighbor. It’s like the two ideas of women that are talked about: the slut or the wife. And that’s not so interesting.”

And so Chastain set out to find better roles for herself. “As an audience member I go to the movies a lot, and I want to see women portrayed like the ones I know—women who are really intelligent and strong and vulnerable,” she says. “I’m not interested in playing a stereotype.”

To learn more about what Chastain is interested in, including a rare glimpse into her intensely guarded love life, pick up the January issue of InStyle, available on newsstands and for digital download Dec. 12.

PHOTOS: 100 of Jessica Chastain’s Best Looks

From Kerry Washington to Lupita Nyong’o, Hollywood’s Leading Ladies Celebrated at the Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon

Kerry Washington, Garcelle Beauvais, and Alfre Woodard stepped out on the red carpet in bold frocks at the 7th annual Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon to celebrate Lupita Nyong’o, who received the Best Breakthrough Performance Award. ”Thank you very much for inviting me to be a part of such an extraordinary community. I am surrounded by people who have inspired me, women in particular whose presence on screen made me feel a little more seen and heard and understood,”says Nyong’o during her acceptance speech.

As stars mixed and mingled, and enjoyed a savory lunch complete with beet carpaccio, stuffed chicken, and a vegan eggplant dish, Nyong’o ended her emotional speech with a touching message for every girl and woman. “I hope that my presence on your screen and my face in magazines may lead you, young girls, on a beautiful journey,” she adds. “That you will feel the validation of your external beauty, but also get to the deeper business of being beautiful inside.” How inspirational! To see who else stepped out for the event, look through our gallery!

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—Josephine Cusumano with reporting by Heather Newgen

Lupita Nyong’o, Alfre Woodard, and Oprah Toast African American Women In Film At the Annual Oscars Sistahs Soiree in Beverly Hills

It was a night full of genuine sisterhood at the Alfre Woodard and Rémy Martin Annual Oscars Sistahs Soiree, where some of Hollywood’s leading ladies toasted African American women in film and honored stars Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave), Oprah Winfrey (Lee Daniels’ The Butler), Naomie Harris (Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom), and Yolanda Ross (Go For Sisters) for their remarkable achievements in entertainment. ”I’m honored to be in that room with that group of women. I mean the guest list is shocking and to be honored in that room it means a lot,” Nyong’o tells InStyle. “I’ve been looking forward to this day, so I’m keen to go down there and be with them…so it’s a great night.”

The 29 guests—which included Angela Bassett, Gabourey Sidibe, Rosario Dawson, and more— sat down around a table decorated with monochromatic red bloom centerpieces where they not only enjoyed a three-course meal of pepper-crusted seared Ahi tuna and vegan and gluten-free delicacies, but the women bonded over shared intimate conversations. “We put four [women] out as honoraries, but then have many toasts at the table. Everybody was able to stand up and say, you know what, I saw you in this this year and that was so great.  You recognize all the contributions,” Woodard explains to InStyle. “This is all the African-American women who’ve ever been nominated before in the acting category. It is for a specific reason and it was during Oscar week to get these women together first of all, so before they go out onto the carpet into the world [they] know that there are all these sisters who are pulling for them,”  she adds. “By gathering us together, that becomes our frame of reference for each other and we’re walking the same journey.” To go inside the intimate evening, look through our gallery to see what the stars had to say about their special sisterhood.

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From Dame to Hasty Pudding’s Women of the Year, Helen Mirren Celebrates (and Twerks) At Harvard University

Say hello to Harvard University’s 2014 Hasty Pudding Woman of the Year, Dame Helen Mirren! The actress was honored with the award by the university’s theatrical society based on her contributions to the arts and celebrated with a day fit for a queen (after all, she was The Queen).

The day began with a parade along the streets of Cambridge, Massachusetts, where the 68-year-old shared a convertible with Hasty Pudding members dressed in drag, followed by a celebratory roast and award presentation where she even showed off her twerking skills. “I was made a Dame of the British Empire, I had to go to Buckingham Palace and I was honored by—actually not her Royal Highness—but by Prince Charles, but that didn’t come anywhere close to this,” Mirren laughed as she accepted her award. “This is the greatest honor, so thank you very, very much.”

Mirren joins an array of Hollywood women who were also honored with the Hasty Pudding Women of the Year award—including Julia Roberts, Drew Barrymore, Sandra Bullock, Halle Berry, Claire Danes, and more. Mirren’s pudding pot trophy will fit nicely in her awards case, right next to her Oscar, don’t you think so?

Want more Helen Mirren? Look through her transformation gallery dating back to 1969!

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