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Kennedy Center Honors: Cher, Philip Glass, Other Honorees Get to Enjoy President-Free Night for a Change

Reba McEntire and the creative team behind "Hamilton" will also be part of the annual event, held next month in Washington, DC.

Cher'Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again' film premiere, Arrivals, London, UK - 16 Jul 2018

David Fisher/REX/Shutterstock

Here are the people who are planning on attending the annual Kennedy Center Honors on the evening of December 2:

  • Cher, an Academy Award-winning actress and legendary singer, most recently seen combining both talents in “Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again.”
  • Philip Glass, an iconic composer whose original work has been used in countless films and TV series, including in “Koyaanisqatsi,” “The Hours,” “Notes on a Scandal,” and “Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters.”
  • Reba McEntire, a modern country music megastar, who has gone on to have an acting career of her own, including a six-season run on a broadcast sitcom named for her.
  • Wayne Shorter, an 11-time Grammy-winning jazz musician, whose many collaborations include playing alongside musical greats across multiple genres.
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda, Thomas Kail, Andy Blankenbuehler, and Alex Lacamoire, the creators of “Hamilton,” a musical that you might be familiar with.

Here are two people who will not be in attendance that night, for the second year in a row: the President and the First Lady, who reports are saying are considering skipping the event. It would be the first time a White House has neglected to make an appearance at consecutive Kennedy Center Honors.

Last year’s honorees included Gloria Estefan, LL Cool J, Lionel Richie, Carmen de Lavallade, and television pioneer Norman Lear. Traditionally, the annual celebration of lifetime achievement in the arts is hosted by the First Family. In past years, the ceremony has produced moments like the late Aretha Franklin’s rousing 2015 performance of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” as a tribute to the song’s writer Carole King.

2018 marks the 41st annual Kennedy Center Honors celebration, all of which have been broadcast on CBS. This year, the network will air an abridged recording of the evening’s festivities on December 26.

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