ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER, ZUBIN MEHTA, DOLLY PARTON, SMOKEY ROBINSON AND STEVEN SPIELBERG TO RECEIVE HONORS DURING "THE 29TH ANNUAL KENNEDY CENTER HONORS"
The Gala Will Be Taped Dec. 3
For a December Broadcast on the CBS Television Network
CBS Has Broadcast the Kennedy Center Honors Each Year Since its Debut
Musical theater composer and producer Andrew Lloyd Webber; conductor Zubin Mehta; country singer and songwriter Dolly Parton; singer, songwriter and producer Smokey Robinson; and film director and producer Steven Spielberg will receive honors for the year 2006, on THE 29TH ANNUAL KENNEDY CENTER HONORS to be presented on Sunday, Dec. 3 and broadcast on the CBS Television Network later that month as a two-hour prime time special for the 29th consecutive year.
The 2006 Honorees will be saluted by stars from the world of the performing arts at a gala performance in the Kennedy Center's Opera House, which will be attended by President and Mrs. Bush and by artists from around the world.
The President and the First Lady will receive the Honorees, and members of the Artists Committee who nominate them, along with the Kennedy Center Board of Trustees at the White House prior to the gala performance. The 2006 Kennedy Center Honors Gala concludes with a dinner dance in the Grand Foyer. The Kennedy Center Honors will be bestowed the night before the gala on Saturday, December 2 at a State Department dinner hosted by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
"This year we honor five extraordinary international artists whose abundant contributions to their fields are remarkable. They have transformed the culture of our country and of the world," said Kennedy Center Chairman Stephen A. Schwarzman. "Andrew Lloyd Webber has led a seismic change in our musical theater, becoming the most popular theater composer in the world; conductor Zubin Mehta's profound artistry and devotion to music make him a world treasure; Dolly Parton's creativity and spirit make her country music's best international ambassador; Smokey Robinson's song and voice have created the soundtrack for the lives of a generation of Americans; and Steven Spielberg's films make him one of the most successful and accomplished directors of all time."
The Honors recipients are selected each year by the Board of Trustees of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The recipients are recognized for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures and television. The primary criterion in the selection process is excellence. The Honors are not designated by art form or category of artistic achievement. Over the years, the selection process has produced a balance among the various arts and artistic disciplines.
Michael M. Kaiser, President of the Center, expressed the national cultural center's gratitude to the many individuals involved in the success of the Honors program. "In addition to recognizing our most treasured artists, the Kennedy Center Honors also extensively supports the many performing arts initiatives, education and public service programming, and national outreach efforts."
George Stevens Jr., who created the Honors in 1978 with Nick Vanoff, will produce and co-write the show for the 29th consecutive year. The Honors telecast has been honored with five Emmys for Outstanding Program as well as the Peabody Award for Outstanding Contribution to Television. THE 29th ANNUAL KENNEDY CENTER HONORS is sponsored in part by General Motors and TIAA-CREF.
RATING: To Be Announced