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Posted Mon, December 7, 2009 3:51pm EDT

Celebs Flood Washington To Honor Artists at the Kennedy Center

Washington was celeb central this weekend as stars came from around the country to fete the recipients of this year’s Kennedy Center Honors. The winners were rock legend Bruce Springsteen, movie pioneer Robert DeNiro, comedian extraordinaire Mel Brooks, opera singer Grace Bumbry, and jazzman Dave Brubeck.

Events started Saturday Dec. 5 with a dinner at the State Department hosted by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, followed on Sunday Dec. 6 by a reception in the East Room of the White House and the big gala at the Kennedy Center Sunday night.

A string of stars sang and danced their way through numbers celebrating the recipients, including John Stewart, Meryl Streep, Aretha Franklin, Ben Stiller, Matthew Broderick, Jack Black, Edward Norton, Sting, and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

The President and First Lady attended the events, as did other political luminaries like Nancy Pelosi and Bill and Hilary Clinton. At the State Department dinner on Saturday night, Bill Clinton reminisced about seeing Dave Brubeck at age 15. He called the performance “utterly captivating.” Seated at the Clintons’ table was Barbara Walters, who turned a few heads—she was there as Frank Langella‘s date!

You’ll be able to see the performances yourself in a two-hour special airing on CBS on December 29 at 9 pm. Watch for Matthew Morrison (Mr. Schuester from “Glee”) hilarious take on “Springtime for Hitler” from The Producers!