The 2023 Kennedy Center Honors, held on December 3, celebrated icons Queen Latifah, Dionne Warwick, and Barry Gibb from the Bee Gees. The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts recently released highlights from the event in Washington, D.C. Hosted by 2017 honoree Gloria Estefan, the ceremony acknowledges outstanding lifelong achievements in the arts. The star-studded event featured tributes from artists like Missy Elliott, Chloe Bailey, and Gladys Knight, and was attended by dignitaries including the President and First Lady. Joining these honorees were Billy Crystal and opera star Renée Fleming. Catch glimpses of the performances and more below.
In her tribute, Missy Elliott eloquently spoke about how Queen Latifah inspired her from a young age. This was followed by Rapsody’s rendition of “Just Another Day…” Elliott highlighted Latifah’s message of unity, self-belief, and enduring love for a Black woman. Full footage of Elliott’s homage is available below.
Dionne Warwick’s musical legacy was celebrated through performances by Chloe Bailey, Cynthia Erivo, and Gladys Knight, while Ego Nwodim of Saturday Night Live and previous honoree Debbie Allen shared heartfelt speeches. Bailey captivated with “Walk On By,” Erivo delivered “Alfie,” and Knight beautifully performed “Say a Little Prayer.”
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Barry Gibb’s tribute was a musical feast with Michael Bublé’s rendition of “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?” and Little Big Town’s version of “Lonely Days, Lonely Nights.” Ben Platt and Ariana DeBose also contributed, with Platt covering “Nights on Broadway” and DeBose offering a medley of Bee Gees’ classics including “How Deep Is Your Love” and “Stayin’ Alive.”
Renée Fleming’s honor included a performance by Dove Cameron of “The Light in the Piazza,” and a powerful joint rendition of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from Carousel by Tituss Burgess, Christine Baranski, and the Jubilation Choir.
Reflecting on the honor, Gibb expressed his disbelief and gratitude, having once only dreamed of such recognition. Queen Latifah, in her statement, reminisced about the challenges faced at the start of her career, emphasizing the significance of this recognition not just for her but for the wider community.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Kennedy Center Honors 2023
Who were the honorees at the 2023 Kennedy Center Honors?
The 2023 Kennedy Center Honors recognized Queen Latifah, Dionne Warwick, Barry Gibb from the Bee Gees, comedian Billy Crystal, and opera singer Renée Fleming for their exceptional contributions to the arts.
What performances took place to honor Queen Latifah at the event?
Missy Elliott gave a speech praising Queen Latifah, followed by Rapsody covering Latifah’s “Just Another Day…”. Elliott emphasized Latifah’s teachings on unity, self-belief, and appreciation of Black women.
Who performed tributes for Dionne Warwick at the Kennedy Center Honors?
Chloe Bailey, Cynthia Erivo, and Gladys Knight performed songs from Warwick’s discography. Bailey sang “Walk On By,” Erivo performed “Alfie,” and Knight chose “Say a Little Prayer.”
What were the highlights of Barry Gibb’s tribute at the event?
Barry Gibb’s tribute featured Michael Bublé singing “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?”, Little Big Town’s version of “Lonely Days, Lonely Nights,” Ben Platt performing “Nights on Broadway,” and a medley of Bee Gees’ hits by Ariana DeBose.
How was Renée Fleming honored at the 2023 Kennedy Center Honors?
Renée Fleming was honored with Dove Cameron performing “The Light in the Piazza” and a joint performance of “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from Carousel by Tituss Burgess, Christine Baranski, and the Jubilation Choir.
More about Kennedy Center Honors 2023
- Kennedy Center Honors Official Website
- Biography of Queen Latifah
- Dionne Warwick’s Music Career
- Barry Gibb and the Bee Gees
- Renée Fleming’s Opera Achievements
- Missy Elliott’s Tribute to Queen Latifah
- Chloe Bailey’s Performance Highlights
- Michael Bublé’s Musical Contributions
- Coverage of the 2023 Kennedy Center Honors Ceremony