Janelle Monáe pays tribute to legendary Black female entertainers in Ralph Lauren’s fashion film for its spring 2021 collection.
The 20-minute “Casablanca”-inspired movie, which premiered on Thursday night on ralphlauren.com, features the song “Dorothy Dandridge Eyes.”
“Dorothy Dandridge, Josephine Baker, Ella Fitzgerald — we love you,” Monáe says mid-song. “Sarah Vaughan, Lady Day — we love you.”
The film was shot in the Ralph Lauren flagship on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. It opens with Monáe, in voiceover, saying, “Once upon a time, we gathered. We got dressed up. We were free. We were liberated. We were fun. We were time travelers. We danced. We loved hard. We told jokes. We laughed.”
Dressed in a sharp tuxedo, Monáe kicked off her set with “Anything or Nothing at All.” She closed the performance with “Tightrope.”
Off-White Launches ‘I Support Black Women’ Campaign
Following his PSA campaign supporting Black businesses and Nigerian women, Off-White founder and creative director Virgil Abloh has teamed up with activist Trinice McNally for the new “I Support Black Women” social media campaign. The initiative raises money to establish physical space and/or a summer camp in Washington D.C. for the Black Women Radicals’ School for Black Feminist Politics and features portraits of nine Black women leaders of all identities, including McNally, Jaimee Swift, Juju Bae, Aja Taylor, Keri Gray, OnRaé LaTeal, Brianna Gibson, Toni-Michelle Williams, Paris Hatcher and Tiara Gendy. The women will also participate in educational lectures and seminars.
“I founded Off-White to be a platform for amplifying diverse voices and talent and to help combat the systemic oppression of Black people,” Abloh said in a statement. “I’m proud that Off-White has been able to create ‘I Support Black Women’ with Trinice McNally. She and the nine other women in our community who we will feature in our Activists Campaign this quarter show enormous determination in their support of Black women each and every day. It is an inspiration to honor them in our quarterly program to offset oppression Black women and men face, by amplifying Black and other under-represented voices.”