Janet Jackson is set to return to the stage after a two-year hiatus, with a live performance at the Essence Music Festival in New Orleans tonight.

“I’m excited, we’re excited,” Janet told the Associated Press. “It’s been awhile since I’ve been on stage and we’re just excited to get back out there.”

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Michelle Ebanks, president of Essence Communications Inc., was very happy to have signed Janet on as a performer, after asking her to perform often over the 15 years, with this year marking the first time she’s accepted the invitation.

“Prayer works,” Ebanks said laughing.

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