The COVID-delayed 2020 Kennedy Center Honors – an annual celebration of the arts – airs this Sunday (8:00pm ET/7:00pm CT on CBS) with Garth Brooks among those being saluted…alongside actress-dancer-choreographer Debbie Allen, singer-songwriter-activist Joan Baez, violinist Midori and beloved TV and film star Dick Van Dyke.
Talking about his fellow honorees, Garth says “This was pretty cool. Debbie Allen, who has done everything from Fame to Grey’s Anatomy. Of course, Dick Van Dyke who, if he would shave his beard looks exactly like Dick Van Dyke when I was a kid. Man, he was the life of the party. Joan Baez – she has changed the world a thousand times over. She changed the world every day the way I hope I do in my lifetime once. You talk about courage. [And] here is character and discipline – this is the definition right here. Midori…just fantastic. This is a person you want to know.”
Now Garth is no stranger to performing at the Kennedy Center Honors, but being on the other side of things was a bit different, “What I saw – for the difference between performing and being there – was the time they allowed the five honorees with each other. You walk out of here going, ‘Damn!’ I could quite possibly be the weak link in this chain, and I am fine with that! These are some amazing…amazing…amazing performers. And to think that this is one of 43 years – that’s a pretty hellacious list to belong to.”
Even though she was right there by his side the night it happened, Trisha Yearwood is looking forward to watching the broadcast of the event this weekend, “I’m looking forward to seeing it myself, because when you’re there you don’t always get the…the bird’s-eye that you get by watching it. We…we had a great time.”
One of the previews shared ahead of Sunday’s telecast is a clip of Kelly Clarkson singing “The Dance” in front of a visibly emotional Garth Brooks.
Talking about Garth, who has appeared on her own talk show, Kelly says “He’s one of those artists that is so captivating and compelling that when you’re listening to his music…like I would listen with my Discman – that’s right, I said Discman – and I…I would listen just on repeat and you could feel his energy. It’s like you could close your eyes and, like, picture the performance. I don’t think many people can do that – just captivate you like that.”
Trying to capture all the feelings his has about being a Kennedy Center Honors honoree, Garth says “An award is only as good as the names that are on it. That’s it. When you walk in that door…and you see the list of names…and then you sit in this group…and get to be a part of this…pretty cool.”
Garth also shared this, “To loosely quote Maya Angelou, I stand here as one but I stand here for the people who have carried me to this point.”
The Kennedy Center Honors – hosted by Gloria Estefan – airs this Sunday (8:00pm ET/7:00pm CT on CBS)
Photos Courtesy of Garth Brooks