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Bette Midler and Lorne Michaels put on their black tie best as they are honored at medallion ceremony for 44th annual Kennedy Center Honors Print-ready version

by Sarah Abraham
Daily Mail
December 4, 2021

Hollywood heavyweights and more all slipped into their best black tie looks for night one of the 44th annual Kennedy Center Honors on Saturday evening.

Held at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. big names honored including Lorne Michaels, Bette Midler and Joni Mitchell were in attendance for the prestigious medallion ceremony.

The weekend long event - which celebrates the careers of prominent members of the performing arts community - also includes a private reception for honorees at the White House and a performance at the Kennedy Opera House theatre on Sunday December 5.

Lorne, 77, was suited up in a tuxedo as he prepared to receive one of five medallions being handed out.

The Saturday Night Live creator posed on the red carpet solo without his wife Alice Barry who was undoubtedly in attendance to support her husband of 30 years.

Bette, 76, - an additional honoree at the event - looked timeless as she modeled a simple black gown with a high neck while carrying a stylish clutch bag.

The famed singer-songwriter/actress wore her greyish-blonde locks down with a few teased pieces on top.

The trio of other honorees at the 44th annual Honors includes legendary songwriter Joni Mitchell, Motown founder/record executive Berry Gordy Jr, and operatic bass-baritone Justino Díaz.

The River singer, 78, stood out from the crowd in a sweeping red fur coat, while Gordy, 92, showed off a textured tuxedo jacket.

Earlier in the day Pete Davidson was also pictured arriving to the Kennedy Center, as he is set to presumably attend to support Lorne.

The medallion ceremony kicked off on Saturday evening but the gala event is on Sunday December 5 which includes a performance and a private reception for the five honorees.

This year President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden are set to attend, reinstating a tradition that was interrupted by former President Donald Trump.

Trump and former first lady Melania declined to attend the 2017 Honors after two of honorees said they would skip the Trump-hosted reception at the White House, due to political beliefs.In 2018 and 2019 they also declined to attend.

In 2020 the event was postponed on account of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulted in a scaled back version in May. The Bidens did not attend in-person, but hosted a reception for the award recipients.

As this year's events are all held in person, proof of full vaccination is required to attend all indoor performances and events at the Kennedy Center.

Masks are also required at all times for regardless of vaccination status in all indoor spaces, per the center's rules.

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Added to Library on December 5, 2021. (420)

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