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The 2010 Kennedy Center Honorees

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Jerry Herman (!), Paul McCartney, and... Oprah ( :huh: ) are among this year's Kennedy Center Honourees!

 

WASHINGTON – Oprah Winfrey is giving up control over one show she'll be in this fall: the Kennedy Center Honors.

 

The 56-year-old TV host and actress will be honored at the 33rd annual event in Washington on Dec. 5, along with musician and former Beatles member Paul McCartney, dancer, choreographer and director Bill T. Jones; country singer-songwriter Merle Haggard; and Broadway composer and lyricist Jerry Herman. The honorees were announced Tuesday.

 

"I love surprising people, I don't like being surprised," Winfrey told The Associated Press. "Releasing any kind of control over a show and allowing myself to sit there and be surprised is not going to be easy but I'm willing to do that."

 

The Kennedy Center Honors recognize performing artists for their contributions to American culture. Winners are selected by the Kennedy Center's Board of Trustees.

 

In addition to her award-winning TV show, Winfrey earned Academy Award and Golden Globe nominations for her work in the film adaptation of Alice Walker's novel "The Color Purple."

 

Winfrey is used to celebrating others, both on her popular television show and at previous Kennedy Center Honors programs, but she said she's looking forward to being celebrated this time around.

 

"When I've done them in the past for people, it has always felt a little bit like being bombarded with a love festival that is about you, and you know that's gotta feel good," Winfrey said during a phone interview in between filming for her show's 25th and final season.

 

The man who is responsible for the event, creator and producer George Stevens Jr., said being a spectator is part of the fun for attendees.

 

"We don't put much of a burden on them," Stevens said. "You don't sing for your supper. They are not asked to speak or perform. They simply receive the tribute of their colleagues and peers, which really makes it very different for them, and is part of what makes it so special."

 

Country star Haggard, perhaps best known for his song "Mama Tried," acknowledged being an audience member will be a new role for him too.

 

"I don't know exactly what to do, I guess just sit there and look like you're having fun," Haggard said in his trademark plainspeak, while acknowledging how honored he will feel to hear others sing part of his music.

 

Kennedy Center Chairman David M. Rubenstein said in a written statement about the honorees that the honesty of Haggard's music and poetic lyrics "has helped to shape the world of country music for nearly five decades."

 

McCartney had been named to receive the Kennedy Center Honors in 2002 but backed out because of a personal obligation.

 

President Barack Obama and the first lady will host the 2010 honorees at the White House before attending the gala with them at the Kennedy Center.

 

Jones, who co-founded the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company as part of an openly gay, interracial couple, says the award and White House reception will shape his worldview.

 

"I've always had this kind of position of feeling just outside, maybe the other, I don't know why but maybe a stepchild," Jones said. "As one gets older and you realize that your brand of art-making with its implied protest is actually something that people in positions of power respect, it's a very important change, very important change, it makes you feel more of a sense of responsibility but it's a responsibility you can accept joyfully."

 

The gala will be recorded for broadcast as a two-hour prime-time special on CBS. This year's will air Dec. 28.

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100907/ap_en_ce/us_kennedy_center_honors

 

Unless the Kennedy Center really, REALLY loved The Colour Purple and Beloved, I am at a loss as to why Oprah of all people is being honoured for her contributions to the performing arts and literature. Nothing against her personally, but she doesn't seem to fit into the Kennedy Center's mandate at all. :blink:

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Jerry Herman (!), Paul McCartney, and... Oprah ( :huh: ) are among this year's Kennedy Center Honourees!

 

 

 

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100907/ap_en_ce/us_kennedy_center_honors

 

Unless the Kennedy Center really, REALLY loved The Colour Purple and Beloved, I am at a loss as to why Oprah of all people is being honoured for her contributions to the performing arts and literature. Nothing against her personally, but she doesn't seem to fit into the Kennedy Center's mandate at all. :blink:

 

 

I admire Oprah as well but I tend to think there are others who should come first. Despite his 'unbeloved' & wacky status, Mickey Rooney is far more deserving for all his performing contributions. Then there's Olivia deHavilland, Liza Minnelli, Jerry Lewis (another wacky character, but does deserve it), Peter O'Toole, Ernest Borgnine, Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson and more.

 

Oprah DOES fall into this category, though:

The Honors recipients, recognized for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts—whether in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures, or television—are selected by the Center’s Board of Trustees. The primary criterion in the selection process is excellence. The Honors are not designated by art form or category of artistic achievement; the selection process, over the years, has produced balance among the various arts and artistic disciplines.

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I admire Oprah as well but I tend to think there are others who should come first. Despite his 'unbeloved' & wacky status, Mickey Rooney is far more deserving for all his performing contributions. Then there's Olivia deHavilland, Liza Minnelli, Jerry Lewis (another wacky character, but does deserve it), Peter O'Toole, Ernest Borgnine, Meryl Streep, Jack Nicholson and more.

 

Oprah DOES fall into this category, though:

The Honors recipients, recognized for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts—whether in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures, or television—are selected by the Center’s Board of Trustees. The primary criterion in the selection process is excellence. The Honors are not designated by art form or category of artistic achievement; the selection process, over the years, has produced balance among the various arts and artistic disciplines.

I could also name two dozen recipients that would make more sense, but Oprah's on there for her pocket book and the fact that nobody screams the name of a celebrity as loudly and repetitively as she does. Seriously, Meryl Streep not on the list and Oprah is??? WTF?

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Every year I hope Dick Van Dyke is included. :( Hopefully next year. There was a big campaign to try to get a Kennedy Center Honor for Carol Channing this year. It looks like it didn't work. If they gave it to her this year alongside Jerry Herman, they could have killed two birds with one stone. They could have done just one big "Hello, Dolly!" production number.

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Every year I hope Dick Van Dyke is included. :( Hopefully next year. There was a big campaign to try to get a Kennedy Center Honor for Carol Channing this year. It looks like it didn't work. If they gave it to her this year alongside Jerry Herman, they could have killed two birds with one stone. They could have done just one big "Hello, Dolly!" production number.

But they never do things like that, it's always one from film, one from dance, one from . . . . you're certainly right about Mr Van Dyke though, super talent, films and tv, he's a living icon.

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