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Kennedy Center Honorees Announced

Garth Brooks and Dick Van Dyke among honorees

After missing last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Kennedy Center has announced their list of honorees for 2021. The recipients will be country artist Garth Brooks, actress Debbie Allen, singer-songwriter Joan Baez, violinist Midori, and actor Dick Van Dyke.

A Look at the Recipients 

Receiving Kennedy Center honors is essentially a lifetime achievement award, a prestigious acknowledgement of major contributions to the arts.

Debbie Allen is a multi-faceted artist whose work includes choreographing the Academy Awards on ten separate occasions, and choreographing artists such as Michael Jackson and Mariah Carey. She also portrayed Lydia Grant on the musical-drama series Fame. Via The Kennedy Center's instagram, Allen is quoted as saying "This is so much more than our nation's Highest Artistic Award, it is a measure of how my footprint has resonated as a path of light over the years and in this time of tremendous uncertainty, fear, and search for hope."

Joan Baez is a singer, songwriter, and activist lauded as one of the greatest folk performers and songwriters of all time. Her music largely focuses on social justice and environmental issues. She also played a massive role in the popularity of Bob Dylan, as her recordings of some of Dylan's early work gained massive traction. She was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2017, and will be honored by the Kennedy Center this June.

Garth Brooks is a country singer-songwriter who gained massive popularity in the 80s and 90s due to his incorporation of pop and rock sounds into the traditional idea of country music, giving us the sound we associate with the genre today. He is the only musician ever to have nine separate albums achieve diamond status in the United States.

Midori, once regarded as a child prodigy and now one of the world's best violinists, is best known for her works beside Leonard Bernstein. She is quoted via the Kennedy Center as saying, ""Artists have a singular responsibility, through our work and deeds, to echo and mirror our society and serve its needs".

Last but not least, Dick Van Dyke was one of the most popular comedians and actors on earth in the 1960s, with the five year run of the Dick Van Dyke Show remaining memorable to this day. With a career that spans nearly seven decades, he has also starred in such legendary films as Marry Poppins (1964), and most recently the 2006 Ben Stiller blockbuster Night at the Museum.

The Kennedy Center honors will be broadcast June 6th, on CBS. For more celebrity news, click here

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