The annual Kennedy Center honors are underway in Washington DC where Sting, Lily Tomlin, Tom Hanks, Al Green and Patricia McBride will be celebrated tonight in a big ceremony and concert. Last night, the five honorees received their awards and medals of honor at an ultra exclusive dinner at the State Department, hosted by opera legend Jessye Norman. Bruce Springsteen evidently gave a spectacular speech about long time friend Sting. Kennedy Center Honors impresario George Stevens Jr toasted Hanks. Green received his kudos from legendary Soul Man Sam Moore. Lily Tomlin was saluted by Bill Irwin. There were also remarks by Kennedy Center honchos David Rubenstein and Deborah Rutter.
Meantime, using social media to break the unofficial surprise, Lady Gaga and Bruno Mars let it out that they’d be at the show tonight. Springsteen (with wife Patti Scialfa) and Moore have been seen around the Mandarin Oriental Hotel, the show’s headquarters. There are rumors about Jennifer Hudson as well as Earth, Wind and Fire performing. Melanie Griffith is also said to be in DC. She co-starred with Sting in “Stormy Monday,” a lost gem of a film circa 1980s. Jane Fonda was spotted around the hotel, too. She would be there for Lily Tomlin, her “9 to 5” co-star.
The Kennedy Center Honors airs December 30th on CBS.