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Mel Brooks, Morgan Freeman to receive National Medals of Arts

By Karen Butler
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Mel Brooks, Morgan Freeman to receive National Medals of Arts
Mel Brooks appears onstage during the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles on September 20, 2015. The actor and filmmaker is to receive the National Medal of Arts later this month. File Photo by Ken Matsui/UPI. | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Sept. 15 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama is to present National Medals of Arts to Mel Brooks, Philip Glass, Sandra Cisneros, Audra McDonald and Berry Gordy next week.

The Sept. 22 ceremony at the White House, which first lady Michelle Obama also will attend, will be live-streamed at www.whitehouse.gov/live.

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"These National Medal of Arts recipients have helped to define our nation's cultural legacy through the artistic excellence of their creative traditions, and I join the president in congratulating and thanking them for their contributions," National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu said in a statement Wednesday.

Also set for recognition are the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center, folk musician Santiago Jiménez, Jr., theater director Moises Kaufman, dancer and choreographer Ralph Lemon, playwright-actor Luis Valdez and painter Jack Whitten.

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