NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--This February, Macy’s celebrates Black History Month by hailing a host of rising stars from a variety of fields including art, music, film, television, literature, community empowerment, the culinary arts and journalism. Black culture has electrified the pulse of American life for generations, from music and fashion to film, television and activism; creating a wave of change that has helped propel the country to new heights. Young, up-and-coming artists and community leaders are the heart of this revolution, powered by creative self-expression and a strong connection to their heritage. As part of Macy’s Black History Month celebrations, film and television actress Jurnee Smollett-Bell will lead panel discussions with other emerging stars, focused on the influence and impact of black culture on all facets of American life.
Joining Smollett-Bell in cities across the country will be Grammy® Award-winning singer Monica in New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Los Angeles; film and stage star and children’s book author Taye Diggs in Atlanta and Miami; actor Terrence J in New York City; Black Girls Rock! founder Beverly Bond and social activist Eunique Jones Gibson in Washington, D.C.; chef G. Garvin and illustrator Shane Evans in Atlanta and Miami; and sports reporter Rosalyn Gold-Onwude in San Francisco.
“As a retailer with a rich history of providing A-list entertainment within the shopping experience, we are thrilled to give our customers a glimpse into the lives and careers of a diverse group of today’s undeniably talented leaders from a variety of industries as they discuss the contributions of Black Americans who came before them and how they are helping to inspire a new generation,” said Dineen Garcia, Macy’s vice president of diversity strategies.
Jurnee Smollett-Bell is an award-winning actress who will star in the hotly-anticipated escape thriller, "Underground," executive produced by John Legend and set to debut March 9, 2016 on WGN America. Smollett-Bell was most recently seen on NBC’s critically acclaimed series, “Parenthood,” for its fifth season and concurrently co-starred in HBO’s “True Blood." Other select credits include Tyler Perry’s “Temptation,” “Friday Night Lights” and “The Defenders.” She will next be seen on the big screen alongside Robert DeNiro, Edgar Ramirez and Usher in the much-anticipated feature, “Hands Of Stone.” Smollett-Bell was awarded the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Motion Picture for her role in “The Great Debaters” and acts as a board member of Artists for a New South Africa (ANSA).
“I am thrilled to be working with Macy’s to celebrate Black History Month,” said Jurnee Smollett-Bell. “As we reflect and pay tribute to the trailblazers who had strength and courage before us, I look forward to connecting with a lot of great people throughout the country and engaging in a dialogue about finding that strength and courage in ourselves every day."
Taye Diggs is a stage, film and television actor best known for “How Stella Got Her Groove Back,” “Chicago,” “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” “Rent,” “Wicked,” and “Private Practice.” Diggs is the author of “Mixed Me.”
"I am honored to be amongst those who have been selected by Macy's to discuss the powerful impact that artistic black minds are having on today's American culture,” said Taye Diggs. “The time to shed light on these important topics is now."
Grammy® Award-winning RCA Records recording artist, Monica, is the first artist to top Billboard’s R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart with No. 1 songs over the span of three consecutive decades. Delivering chart topping hits such as, “Don’t Take it Personal,” “Before you Walk Out of My Life,” and “The Boy Is Mine,” Monica has sold more than 25 million albums worldwide. Her new album, CODE RED debuted at the top of Billboard’s R&B Albums Chart.
"I can't wait to engage with young people in some of my favorite cities and share personal stories of how my mentors and black culture have made a positive impact on my life," said Monica.
Following the panel discussion, Macy’s will host a meet and greet opportunity with Jurnee Smollett-Bell and additional talent. At each of the Black History Month events, Macy’s customers will receive an exclusive “Underground” T-shirt and see a first-look at the series in which rising star Smollett-Bell stars.
Below are the stores and select information for Macy’s – Rising Stars events:
Macy’s Herald Square (New York City) – Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 6 p.m.
Macy’s City Center (Philadelphia) – Thursday, Feb. 4 at 5:30 p.m.
Macy’s State Street (Chicago) – Wednesday, Feb. 10 at 5:30 p.m.
Macy’s Metro Center (Washington, D.C.) – Thursday, Feb. 11 at 5:30 p.m.
Macy’s Lenox Square (Atlanta) – Friday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m.
Macy’s Aventura (Aventura, FL) – Saturday, Feb. 13 at Noon
Macy’s Union Square (San Francisco) – Wednesday, Feb. 17 at 6 p.m.
Macy’s Baldwin Hills (Los Angeles) – Thursday, Feb. 18 at 6 p.m.
For a complete listing of Macy’s Black History Month events, please visit macys.com/celebrate.
Macy's, the largest retail brand of Macy's, Inc. (NYSE:M), delivers fashion and affordable luxury to customers at approximately 800 locations in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam, as well as to customers in the U.S. and more than 100 international destinations through its leading online store at macys.com. Via its stores, e-commerce site, mobile and social platforms, Macy's offers distinctive assortments including the most desired family of exclusive and fashion brands for him, her and home. Macy's is known for such epic events as Macy's 4th of July Fireworks® and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade®, as well as spectacular fashion shows, culinary events, flower shows and celebrity appearances. Macy's flagship stores including Herald Square in New York City, Union Square in San Francisco, State Street in Chicago, Dadeland in Miami and South Coast Plaza in southern California are known internationally and leading destinations for visitors. Building on a more than 150-year tradition, and with the collective support of customers and employees, Macy's helps strengthen communities by supporting local and national charities giving more than $70 million each year to help make a difference in the lives of our customers.
For Macy’s media materials, including images and contacts, please visit our online pressroom at macys.com/pressroom.