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U2 ‘grateful’ for Kennedy Centre Honour in Washington DC

The Kennedy Centre Honours celebrate an artist's legacy, catalogue, and career over the decades, with this year’s ceremony being the 45th Annual occasion.

(L-R top row): U2 members Adam Clayton, Larry Mullen Jr, The Edge, and Bono and (L-R bottom row) Amy Grant, Gladys Knight, George Clooney, and Tania León at the dinner in Washington DC on Saturday night. Photo: Gail Schulman

Neasa CumiskeySunday World

U2 will receive a lifetime artistic achievement honour from the John F Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts in Washington DC this evening.

The Kennedy Center Honors celebrate an artist's legacy, catalogue, and career over the decades, with this year’s ceremony being the 45th Annual occasion.

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden as well as Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff will be present tonight to see Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton, and Larry Mullen Jr accept their honour.

The 2022 honourees are actor George Clooney, singer-songwriter Amy Grant, singer Gladys Knight, composer and conductor Tania León, and U2, all of whom attended a special dinner on Saturday night.

Sunday night's event takes place at 6.30pm (local time) at the Kennedy Centre Opera House. It will be televised in the US on Wednesday 28 December on CBS.

The Chairman of the Kennedy Centre, David M Rubenstein, said U2 had won over America and beyond with their "iconic anthems, potent lyrics, and powerful messages of social justice and global citizenship".

He added that the Irish band they had earned a musical legacy that crosses generations, inspires, and unites.

Meanwhile, U2 thanked the Kennedy Center and their American fans for their support as they accepted the honour in a statement.

The group wrote: “In December 1980, we made our first trip across the Atlantic to America. Our first show was at The Ritz in New York City, the second, The Bayou in D.C.

“We had big dreams then, fuelled in part by the commonly held belief at home that America smiles on Ireland. And it turned out to be true, yet again.

“But even in the wilder thoughts, we never imagined that 40 years on, we would be invited back to receive one of the nation’s greatest honours...

“It has been a four-decade love affair with the country and its people, its artists, and its culture.

“We consider America to be a home away from home and we are very grateful to the #KennedyCenterHonors for welcoming us into this great clan of extraordinary artists.”

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