Caroline Kennedy presided over the Sunday night festivities as top U.S. performers paid tribute to the honorees under the watchful eye of the commander-in-chief and first lady in the presidential box of the Washington theater, The Washington Post reported Monday.
Kennedy channeled George Bernard Shaw saying: "You use a glass mirror to see your face; you use works of art to see your soul.
"The artists we honor this evening," she said, "have indeed touched our souls."
Dancers Jacques d'Amboise, Maria Tallchief and Arthur Mitchell waxed nostalgic about Farrell, a former prima ballerina of the New York City Ballet; and Harris was praised by Kevin Spacey, Alec Baldwin, Helen Mirren and Mary-Louise Parker.
The gala was taped for broadcast Dec. 27 on CBS.
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