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Classical 101

The Kennedy Center Honors

They range from the divine (Meryl Streep) to the edgy (Sonny Rollins.) Every year the performing arts get a party in Washington D.C. It's good to be reminded of the quality of our pinnacle artists. Herewith the 2011 Kennedy Center honorees: Meryl Streep http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zicgut4gpwU Sonny Rollins. Was there anything finah? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S46dhVcYWpY Neil Diamond Yo-Yo Ma (you mean he hasn't been awarded the honor yet?) and the even more sublime.... ...Barbara Cook http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_G4JNMURj4 Every year chat rooms and blogs and listervs are ablaze with "You mean ______ wasn't chosen AGAIN? Who would YOU choose for a Kennedy Center Honor? Me, I think the Honors missed the boat by not including Eileen Farrell, Robert Merrill,  Grace Slick and Rudolf Nureyev. Still, a party's a party and I won't miss the awards telecast on December 27. For the record, the Kennedy Center Honors began in 1978. The honorees that year were,  Marian Anderson, Fred Astaire, George Balanchine, Richard Rodgers, and Arthur Rubinstein. Five bucks if you can name last year's winners.