The milestone 10th installment of Black Girls Rock! was a fete not to be missed. From the M.A.D. Girl spotlights – which honored Marley Dias, Maya Penn and Haile Thomas for Making a Difference in our local communities and abroad – to the all-girl bands and background singers, BET once again allowed DJ Beverly Bond‘s vision to bless our screens with inspirational stories, empowering speeches and dynamic performances. And being that this was a celebration of Blackness, it wouldn’t have been complete without a heavy helping of music.
Ball-of-fire host Tracee Ellis Ross kicked things off with an energetic opening followed by amazing vocal displays by Jazmine Sullivan, Brandy, Andra Day. When the harmonic trio of Corinne Bailey Rae, Marsha Ambrosius and Imani Uzuri passed the baton (read: microphone) to Monica, she took firm hold and kept the momentum going.
Like every melanin-kissed shero that graced the stage that evening, Miss Thang came to slay. Sitting on a dramatic tear-shaped centerpiece and flanked by chocolate ballet dancers, the R&B diva dazzled in a rosé champagne gown as she delivered a brilliant rendition of “Alone in Your Heart.” Her vocals were clear and strong, captivating the audience and proving that she still has plenty to offer after twenty years in the game. The graceful dancers enhanced Monica’s performance, but the cutest ballerina waited until the very end to make her appearance. “Monica’s Love,” her adorable daughter Laiyah, stole the show and melted our hearts, making it one of the night’s most memorable moments.