This year, the Kennedy Arts Center honored renowned Canadian singer Johnny Mitchell with a rare appearance on Sunday, the most prestigious honor in American art.
US President Joe Biden attends the annual tribute to the Kennedy Art Center, which former President Donald Trump ignored during his four-year term.
The concert was attended by several singers, including Nora Jones and Brittany Howard, who sang classic songs for Mitchell.
The center also honored actress Pete Midler and Modown founder Perry Cordy.
Stevie Wonder, one of Cordy’s many inventions, was a highlight of the four – hour star party in Washington, DC.
Smokey Robinson also discovered Cordy as a teenager and introduced a song he wrote to the music mogul.
“I imagine being in a dream … it’s a wonderful dream,” Cordy told reporters on the red carpet.
In honor of Mitchell, Howard sang his old song “Bath Sights Now”, Jones gave Mitchell two songs, “The Circle Game” and “Your Case”, and Brandi Carlyle sang “River”.
Six years after Mitchell’s appearance at the party, he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy.
Other winners honored at the festival include writer, producer and actor Lorne Michaels, whose most famous work is “Saturday Night Live”. The center also honored opera singer Justino Diaz.
Many of the awardees did not attend the ceremony when Trump was four years in office, following threats that they would boycott the ceremony and not attend Trump’s first year in office.
Former comedian David Letterman told audiences, “I’m glad to see a presidential election again.
President Biden gave an official welcome to the dignitaries at the White House and said, “Thank you to all the honorees past and present for sharing the Kennedy Center Awards with your nation and the world.”
Paul Simon performed “America” for his friend Michaels, while he performed parts of the operas “Carmen” and “Fast” in memory of opera singer Dennis Graves Diaz.
The 2020 concert was canceled due to a corona virus infection.
Last May, the center organized a number of small activities that required social exclusion rules for last year’s honorees, including singer John Pace and actor Tick Van Dick.
The Kennedy Center for the Arts has held annual festivals in Washington, DC since 1978, celebrating art stars who have contributed throughout their artistic careers to enrich American culture.
The Kennedy Center consists of a special honors advisory board consisting of two members of the board of trustees as well as former honorary and distinguished artists.
The Board of Trustees selects honorary winners based on their excellence in music, dance, drama, opera, film or television, and honors will then be announced at the annual ceremony.
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