Kennedy Center honors for Reba McEntire, Cher and ‘Hamilton’

WASHINGTON — Cher, composer Phillip Glass, country music star Reba McEntire and jazz legend Wayne Shorter will be honored for lifetime achievements in the arts at this year’s Kennedy Center Honors.

The national arts center also announced Wednesday a special award for the genre-bending musical “Hamilton,” as part of the gala set for Dec. 2.

Before last year’s program, several honorees threatened a boycott if President Donald Trump attended. He and first lady Melania Trump decided to skip the event.

The White House said it’s too early to know whether Trump will participate in this year’s ceremony. Trump may attend the Group of 20 summit in Argentina, which ends Dec. 1.

Glass said he hopes Trump does show up as a conciliatory gesture to the arts community.

The “Hamilton” honor marks a first-time honor for a specific piece of art, and a first for a contemporary work. The award will go to the four main creators of the musical: writer and actor Lin-Manuel Miranda, director Thomas Kail, choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler and music director Alex Lacamoire.

The musical is playing at the Kennedy Center through mid-September.

One of the special aspects of the Kennedy Center program is that each recipient is given a personalized introduction and performance by participants kept secret from the honoree.

McEntire has served as one of those surprises for four past honorees: Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Lily Tomlin and Carol Burnett.

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