Belles Of The Ball at The 'N'don't go' Gala

We looked simply darling in our big poofy dresses. We felt beautiful. We felt like princesses. As a matter of fact, we felt like belles of the ball. (See pics below)  Every year, N'digo Magazine hosts its Annual Gala, a classy affair dedicated to honoring the black socialites and the urban elite. Ordinarily held in downtown amphitheatres, the tickets come with a hefty price tag. As media, we avoided the $250 charge to mix, mingle and see Fantasia perform live. With no real plans to attend this year's soiree, we were approached by DWilliams PR to assist with marketing the event through the Flair TV network. Perhaps ticket sales were low, considering other media outlets like Red Level Entertainment and Industry Buzzz were approached with the same plea. However, we were submissive, only asking for an interview with Fantasia. Unfortunately, that didn't happen since she high-tailed out of the building after her applausible, yet rogueish performance. We imagine she left so suddenly with no knowledge of Flair TV waiting to interview her.

Like always, we get the short end of the stick. We do our part and get cheated. We help out and don't get helped, which is reminiscent of the activities that took place for the 2008 Gala. Hermene's camp invited us to interview its Scholarship recipients to produce a final video to showcase during the Gala. However, the "Stubborn Belle" opted to have another company produce the video without our knowledge.  She looked at us with the foul disposition as if we were an inconvenience to her at that moment. We saw that same look on Sunday night when she barely spoke, waved, or smiled after we grabbed her attention fanatically across the room. It seems Chicago loves to praise Mean Hermene Hartman for her accomplishments in media and her compassion for seeing others succeed. Please don't believe the hype. We beg you. We are two young, African American women on the move, running a high profile media company, and making awesome strides. Some time after the 2008 Gala, we approached Mean Hermene about any upcoming events she knew of and for advice in marketing and branding. She responded to the initial email asking what we wanted and then ignored our response. We reflected on that instance when "Timmie" King accepted his award this year, thanking Hermene, reminiscing on how much she's motivated and encouraged him along the way. We know for a fact she's got a thing for the male species, going out of her way to help them while giving the ladies the flux, the frowns, and the attitude. She probably smiled long enough to corrupt these sponsors into paying for a night full of ulterior motives. Even worse, it seems she corrupted us too! We left the night hungry because there was no real food. We were $200 poorer from wardrobe purchases, gas, parking, and production costs. We didn't get the guaranteed interview with Fantasia.

Thumbnail image for IMAGE_018.jpg

 And lastly we did not get a logo or company listing under 'Special Thanks' like ALL of the other media outlets did. So why us? We did what was asked of us: to market this event on our entire network for two full weeks. We could have at least been allowed to put a flyer or something in the gift bag.


 If nothing else, this year's N'digo Gala gave us a  rare oppotunity to get dolled up and feel our best. We also were excited about Tracy Schmidt's N'New Media award as the co-Founder of, the blog site that has given us this platform to write these types of articles.(Thanks, Tracy!)

From Flair's perspective, we can offer words of advice as young, fresh, and hip media mavens:1)  If you're going to charge a car note price for a ticket, at least serve your guests a beautiful spread of FILLING food and not rabbit food. 2) At least pretend you care about the future of the scholarship reciepients. These are our future leaders and they deserve to have a voice like the the honorees did. 3) Be sure to highlight deserving individals who have really given back and not just people who will help you reach your sponsorship goals (Ahem, Pam Morris)  4) Choose a more graceful performer to represent your bourgeois event instead of one who tramples across the stage barefoot, in a tight club dress showing their unmentionables. Change it up and try a comedian next year 5) And lastly, Ms Hartman needs take a seat and allow someone else to be the Master of Ceremonies. Everyone knows you're the woman behind N'digo, so take a front seat, enjoy the program, and just prepare closing remarks for the end. 6) Best of all, just let Flair TV help out with the planning. We know that's a hard notion for N'digo to N'gest. It could work in their favor...just the way Hermene likes it.

Photos By: Melissa Morley





Leave a comment
  • Dear FLAIR TV:

    I realize that what I am about to share with you causes me to be alone while "crying out in the wilderness". In other words, ain't nobody else responded to y'alls silly, childish and self-serving ranting about the N'DIGO GALA.

    The garbage that the two of you have cited, about the GALA, amounts to a hill of vapor. Both of you have, obviously, convinced yourselves that you are more important to the world than you, in fact, are.

    Some real simple and easy questions: 1) How many events, of the caliber of the N'DIGO GALA, have you produced? How many scholarships (The N'DIGO FOUNDATION has presented nearly 250), either individually or collectively, have you presented to our young people? How many upstanding and outstanding members of the community have the two of you pubicly honored for their service? These represent some of the reasons the N'DIGO FOUNDATION presents the GALA each year. The GALA does not exist to stroke and perpetuate y'alls little non-clear agenda. Unless your agenda includes the two of you dressing up in cute, little girl outfits (tiaras included). I am almost sure that there were only two tiaras in Symphony Center. Grow up!!

  • In reply to woneal:

    Hello Mr. Old Man Wendell

    (Yawning) Hm, we can only imagine that you must be writing this comment as fulfillment of your loyalty to Ms. Hartman.

  • In reply to woneal:

    Sorry about the 'rough' experience ladies. But it doesn't shock me. We're talking about a woman who's sole purpose has nothing to do with building up and the strengthening of the community, particularly the young community, but everything to do with herself. Ok, Ok, Ok!!!! Mr. Wendall. We know Hermene is well-known. We know because of the CAUSE you may kiss the ground that she walks on. I think that cause is fraud though! Meaning not authentic. Maybe to some of you she's an icon to me she is too. BUT when does an icon have a right to act anal, rude, disrespectful, degrading, and unprofessional? It's for that very reason, if I'm not mistaken, you have an image to uphold. YOU CAN'T GO AROUND ALL WILLY NILLY TREATING PEOPLE ANYWAY YOU THINK WILL MAKE YOU FEEL BETTER AT THE END OF THE DAY! Now the neighborhood ain't new to knowing Mean Hermene got issues. It's just that too many are quiet. But why? No, we don't have to protest, or boycott against a woman who feels the world revolves around her, but simply put things need to be put in it's place when it happens. Listen to the words of this blog, they were bamboozled, swindled, peddled, hustled, and mislead more than one. Of course, they have the right to "address" it. But why is the younger community looked down upon so much? We just trying to help you out!! Sit at your feet! This was clearly not a good example of how business should be handled.

  • In reply to My1opinionis:

    My1opinionis: Very well said! We love the part "Maybe to some of you she's an icon to me she is too. BUT when does an icon have a right to act anal, rude, disrespectful, degrading, and unprofessional?"

    In this blog we are not taking away the fact that she is iconic in the African American community, for that we commend her and respect her. However, we do not want our admiration to be taken for granted. Just because we admire you doesn't mean that you are allowed a pass when you have been wrong. That's not fair!

    Ever since this blog was posted we have been back lashed for being truthful about our account. Geesh! It's our experience. The good, the bad, the ugly.... Why can't people let it be?

    People need to remember: Not every critic is going to like Stephen Spielberg or his movies.

    Thanks For Reading

Leave a comment