Kennedy Center Honors to Celebrate Dionne Warwick, Billy Crystal, Queen Latifah, Barry Gibb, Renée FlemingJune 22, 2023
Dionne Warwick, Billy Crystal, Queen Latifah, Barry Gibb and Renée Fleming have been set as the five arts figures due to be celebrated at the 46th annual Kennedy Center Honors, with a ceremony taking place Dec. 3 in Washington, D.C.
The ceremony will take place Dec. 3 and be filmed for later broadcast airing on CBS and streaming on Paramount+.
Four of the five honorees hail from the world of music, although Queen Latifah has shifted her focus toward acting in recent years. The ratio is not an uncommon one for the Kennedy Center Honors: Last year’s ceremony honored U2, Amy Grant, Tania León and Gladys Knight, leaving George Clooney the odd acting man out.
No date was announced for the broadcast, but the 2022 ceremony also took place in the first week of December and was broadcast during the last week of that month. The show will be produced by Done+Dusted in association with ROK Productions. Elizabeth Kelly and David Jammy will serve as executive producers, with Alex Rudzinski directing.
The announcement made it clear that selecting Queen Latifah during a year that is commonly being thought of as the 50th anniversary of hip-hop was no coincidence. “This year we pay special tribute to the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, a uniquely American culture whose constant evolution is one of enduring relevance and impact, reflecting our society as it has grown into an international phenomenon,” said Deborah F. Rutter, Kennedy Center president, in a statement. “Hip-hop has been an important, thriving art form here at the Center for a number of years; what a privilege it is to bestow an Honors to the First Lady of Hip-Hop who has inspired us along the way.”
Each of the selectees for 2023 can reasonably be considered a household name. Gibb is the surviving member of the brother trio the Bee Gees, who reentered the public mindset in a big way in recent years with the HBO doc “How Do You Mend a Broken Heart.” Opera star Fleming has been called “America’s soprano.” Warwick hit it big as a pop star in the 1960s with songs like “Alfie” and became known to new generations recently through her Twitter account, of all things. Crystal, star of screen and more recently stage, enjoyed a Broadway run last year with his musical adaptation of his film “Mr. Saturday Night.”
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