Honestly I could just stop right there with her name. On Sunday, July 7th, the rising star who’s been the buzz around the industry lately made her entrance into the Essence Festival realm, one that we’re sure she’ll see MUCH more of in the future.
During her EMF debut at the Hot Right Now lounge, Normani’s set had everything that a seasoned pop diva’s show would include… sequins outfit √, full voice live vocals √, tightly choreographed dance routines √, a wind machine fan for hair blowing effects √√, and the ability to work the stage and command a crowd √√√.
Granted this wasn’t my first time seeing her perform live so to speak, as I’ve had the opportunity of experiencing a Fifth Harmony concert, but her solo set was an extreme departure from any efforts with the group. I was thoroughly impressed at the growth that she’s endured over the past few years, and saw that “fire” in her eyes that shows she wants it now more than ever . What I watched from the crowd was a young woman who is comfortably coming into her own and not afraid to find her own voice.
For the 28 minutes that she performed, Normani kept her fans entrapped with a setlist that included the hits that everyone is already familiar with “Love Lies” & “Dancing With The Stranger“, as well as her new single “Waves” and fan favorite “Checklist“. The Essence crowd even got treated to a cover of Aaliyah’s “One In A Million” and a medley of Rihanna songs.
My only complaint is that the superlounge wasn’t packed to capacity to see Ms. Kordei rip into the stage like she did, but that’s okay though, because after Sunday’s showing, the tried and true core of EMF attendees will have no other reason than to take notice to performing dynamo for her next appearance, which might we add, should be on the main stage.