Actor George Clooney, singers Amy Grant, Gladys Knight, and Tania León, as well as the rock band U2, were honoured for their contributions to the arts on Sunday at a White House reception and an energetic Kennedy Center Honors performance.
Celebrities from the worlds of music, theatre, and film are honoured at the Kennedy Center event, which is currently in its 45th year, for their contributions to American culture.
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President Joe Biden addressed each artist individually at a reception at the White House for the five awardees, praising their unique abilities and saying they exemplified the spirit of the nation.
The rainbow-colored ribbon was created by Ivan Chermayeff, the creative illustrator and logo designer behind well-known businesses like National Geographic and NBC. It represents the diversity and adaptability of abilities found in the performing arts industry.
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The rainbow flag, which was first created by a gay activist called Gilbert Baker and had its premiere at the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade celebration on June 25, 1978, was not Ivan’s intention, he told The Washington Post Sunday in 2008.
“That spectrum was what I had in mind in the first place, in that it’s a spectrum of many skills within the performing arts. Singing, dancing, and so on,” Ivan explained.
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The ribbon features a unique, eye-catching design that sets the recipients apart from the competition, unlike the Grammy Award or the Academy Award.
The ribbons awarded during the Annual Kennedy Center Honors, an iconic piece of design, may have presented some styling difficulties for the awardees over time. Consider Dolly Parton, who reportedly had her Robert Bahar gown customised to match the award’s aesthetic.