Past recipients of this award include Beverly Sills, Tito Puente, Christopher Reeve, Chuck Close, Robert DeNiro, Kurt Vonnegut and Roy Lichtenstein. This year, the ceremonies for the 34th annual New York State Governor's Arts Award will take place Nov. 20 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and feature a slew of new artists to be honored. The Award, which was established in 1966, is given to artists, arts organizations, and patrons to celebrate outstanding achievement while drawing focus to the importance of arts in New York State. This year's honorees include Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Horton Foote (The Young Man from Atlanta, The Trip to Bountiful, The Last of the Thorntons), ballet master Peter Martin, sculptor Mark di Suvero, photographer Martin Rogovin, saxophonist Jimmy Heath (who will perform with the All City Jazz Ensemble, comprising over 500 New York high school students) and William Aguado of the Bronx Council on the Arts.
The evening will be hosted by Master of Ceremonies, actress-producer Rosie Perez. Other celebrities who will join Governor George Pataki, his wife Elizabeth, and Chairman of the NY State Council on the Arts Richard J. Schwartz to present the awards include actor John Ritter (Dinner Party), actress Jasmine Guy (Chicago), Tony Award winner Heather Headley (Aida), TV's Charlie's Angel Cheryl Ladd (now in Annie Get Your Gun), home maven Martha Stewart, opera diva Beverly Sills, newscaster Dan Rather, author Tom Wolfe and half of the Bronx Bombers battery, Yankee Jorge Posada who will present the award for fellow Bronx man Aguado.
The awards ceremony and presentation begins at 7 PM. The reception to follow the proceedings will begin at approximately 8:30 PM at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Fifth Ave at 82nd Street.