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FunTimes Magazine

Virtual Wawa Welcome America Concert Features African Diaspora Headliners Cynthia Erivo and Jason Derulo

By Nana Ama Addo

COVID-19 did not stop the holiday shine. On July 4th 2020, Wawa continued its annual Wawa Welcome America’s July 4th Concert on a virtual platform. This year’s ‘Party on the Parkway’ was broadcast live from The Philadelphia Met on the Independent Blue Cross Stage, and headlined by two phenomenal performers of the African Diaspora: Grammy award winner Cynthia Erivo and multi-platinum-selling singer, dancer and songwriter Jason Derulo.

Photo Credit: Welcome America / Steve Garfinkel

Jason Derulo, a Haitian-American entertainer from Florida, started his career as a songwriter. He won the acclaimed Showtime at the Apollo contest in 2006, and wrote songs for artists such as Diddy, Cassie, Birdman and Lil Wayne. In 2009, his debut song ‘Whatcha Say’ became a number one hit. Recently, he shook up the social media platform TikTok with his song ‘Savage Love.’ This multi-platinum-selling performer continues setting trends, writing, singing, dancing, acting, producing and making catchy pop, Hip-Hop and R&B songs featuring artists like Nicki Minaj, 2 Chainz, Pitbull and more. This past weekend, he lit up the stage with an explosive Independence Day performance in the City of Brotherly Love.

Photo Credit: Welcome America / Steve Garfinkel

Cynthia Onyedinmanasu Chinasaokwu Erivo, known as Cynthia Erivo, is a British-Nigerian actress, singer and Broadway performer. A Tony, Grammy and Emmy Award winner, Erivo has delivered powerful roles in musicals such as Sister Act and The Color Purple on Broadway, for which she won a Tony Award. Recently she portrayed the legendary Harriet Tubman in the screen film Harriet, as well as co-wrote and sang an original song ‘Stand Up’ for the film. Performing with the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia, Erivo spoke truth to power with songs like ‘A Change is Gonna Come,’ ‘Summertime’ and ‘I Put A Spell on You.’

This concert definitely made waves as Philadelphia honors America’s continuous fight for freedom, from the Boston Tea Riots to the Black Lives Matter Movement.