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The New York Times

At Kennedy Center Honors, ‘Hamilton’ Creators Are Lauded

For the honorees — McEntire, Cher, the jazz saxophonist Wayne Shorter and the composer Philip Glass — there was no shortage of laughter, praise and tears. In tribute after tribute, they were called trailblazers, icons and legends by their colleagues and the performers they inspired.

But Sunday was a night to reflect not just on the legacy of the artists who watched compilations of their work. It was a night, several of them agreed, to ponder the future of the American arts.

In a time of partisan division, the arts would be there for inspiration, hope and growth.

“When you leave this country, you discover that the rest of the world sees America through the arts that come from America,” Glass said on Saturday, after he was presented his medal. Like all of the honorees, he still seemed to be processing that it was his work being honored.

“This moves me beyond words,” McEntire said, her eyes filling with tears as she held her medallion for the first time.

The members of the “Hamilton” crew’s place in the ceremony served as a reminder of what more was to come, even as they took a place among the Kennedy Center honorees.

“A night like tonight says, just keep going,” Blankenbuehler, the choreographer, said. “Just keep flying through the air, and don’t look back, and don’t question. Just believe that things can happen if you dream them up, like the people who inspired us.”

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Eileen Andrews

Eileen Andrews

Vice President, Public Relations

202-416-8448
etandrews@kennedy-center.org

  • JFK Centennial
  • Kennedy Center Honors
  • Expansion
  • Institution
• • •
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Michelle Pendoley

Director of Public Relations, Non-Classical


mapendoley@kennedy-center.org

  • Kennedy Center Honors
  • Mark Twain Prize
  • Expansion
  • Education
  • DIRECT CURRENT
  • Institution
• • •
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Rachelle Roe

Director of Public Relations, NSO & Classical


rbroe@kennedy-center.org

  • National Symphony Orchestra
  • NSO @ Wolf Trap
  • NSO Pops
  • Chamber Music
  • Fortas Series
  • Sound Health
  • SHIFT
• • •
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Brendan Padgett

Senior Press Representative

202-416-8004
bepadgett@kennedy-center.org

  • Theater
  • Theater for Young Audiences
  • Festivals
  • International Programming
• • •

Sabrina Skacan

Senior Press Representative, WNO & Classical

202-416-8453
smskacan@kennedy-center.org

  • Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program
  • American Opera Initiative
  • Washington National Opera
  • KC Jukebox
  • Renee Fleming VOICES
• • •
Brittany Laeger

Brittany Laeger

Press Representative

202-416-8445
balaeger@kennedy-center.org

  • VSA
  • Any Given Child
  • Ballet
  • Dance
  • Education
• • •
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Chanel Williams

Press Representative for Contemporary Culture

202-416-8447
cpwilliams@kennedy-center.org

  • Hip Hop
  • International Programming
  • Jazz
  • Comedy
  • Festivals
  • Contemporary Music
• • •
LaurenHolland

Lauren Holland

PR Coordinator, Non-Classical

202-416-8441
leholland@kennedy-center.org

  • Millennium Stage
• • •

Iain Higgins

PR Coordinator, Classical

202-416-8442
imhiggins@kennedy-center.org

• • •