Reports of some of the world's most notable singers - from Elton John, to Celine Dion, to Garth Brooks - turning down invitations were followed by news of Jennifer Holliday backing out over backlash she received for initially agreeing to be a part of the event.
And now it appears that the decision has predictably cost her to the effect of career suicide. Scrolling back a little over one month's time, Michele's followers on Instagram may pinpoint the very date she hinted at optimistic news concerning her future in the industry.
Weeks later a promotional campaign involving the posting of numerous identifiable strong Black women sprouted up on her page, with the images of Michelle Obama, Oprah, Gabrielle Union, Jennifer Hudson, Tracy Ellis Ross, Beyonce and the likes sharing space with a sprawling AD that built anticipation for the tentative project.
But then there was her initiation of a Strong Black Woman Challenge that has barely produced any search results in the week since she started it, and it was perhaps at that point that reality hit. On Friday, October 27 Michele's tone on social media took a sudden turn. The Grammy Award-winning crooner would drop the words "dropped" and "suicidal" in a pair of Instagram posts through which she detailed how such a morbid conclusion has gradually come to manifest for her in both an artistic, and a literal sense.
When you're laying in bed naked, next to a bottle of Bacardi and Xanex," Michele's message began. She'd go on to state how many of those she's built with over the past decade, particularly in the fields of community activism and Black empowerment, have turned their backs on her - and how that nearly drove her off of the edge.
And when your speech is so slurred you just stop speaking. You hope you don't wake up," the post, titled "Suicidal Thoughts," read in part. She'd follow it up with an entry that was arguably more tragic. Something came out of me. It was my child. The one my love and I worked so hard on. I never knew I could allow myself to be so broken that my physical body would break down.
But before concluding her outpouring with a statement on how yoga has helped save her life, Michele revealed in a post titled "They Dropped Me," that after all of the work she had put into promoting and completing her Strong Black Woman album, Capitol and Caroline records went on and released her.
And of the series of posts through which Michele opened up about her post-Inauguration tailspin, "They Dropped Me" seemed to close on the most bitter note, although, her words make it clear that she remains no less defiant against her critics than she was when she fired back with her "No Political Genius," spoken word piece in the aftermath of the ordeal.
How hard can you try to ruin someone? How much hate do you need to spew to show me you want to see my demise? I won't stop StrongBlackWoman," she exclaimed.