President Obama Presents National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal (Video)

PlayBlog   President Obama Presents National Medal of Arts and National Humanities Medal (Video)
President Obama received the recipients of the National Medal of Arts and the National Humanities Medal in the East Room of the White House March 2. Twenty were honored for their contributions to American arts, literature and scholarship. Video of the ceremony, including Obama's opening remarks and the presentation of the medals, is available below.

While stage and screen actress Meryl Streep and novelist Harper Lee, whose "To Kill a Mockingbird" has inspired multiple stage and screen adaptations, were not present to be awarded their medals, Robert Brustein, former dean of the Yale School of Drama, founder of American Repertory Theatre and former critic for The New Republic, was present to receive his. Other recipients of the National Medal of the Arts included pianist Van Cliburn, artist Mark di Suvero, poet Donald Hall, Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, musician/producer Quincy Jones, jazz musician Sonny Rollins, and musician/songwriter James Taylor.

Humanities Medal recipients included Library of America founder Daniel Aren, historian Bernard Bailyn, historian/educator Jacque Barzun, author/environmentalist Wendell E. Berry, Spanish and Latin-American literary critic Roberto Gonzalez Ecchevaria, American Council of Learned Societies president Stanley Nider Katz, author Joyce Carol Oates, biographer/literary critic Arnold Rampersed, novelist Philip Roth and historian/scholar Gordon Wood.

To watch the ceremony, look below:

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