Every December, Washington's elite gather to honor entertainment's brightest stars with the Kennedy Center Honors. Handed out annually since 1978, the awards reward lifetime achievement in the performing arts.
Here, Vice President Dick Cheney applauds as President and Mrs. Bush arrive for the 2005 ceremonies.
Click through to see this year's honorees.
Movie director Steven Spielberg, 59, is one of the most influential and richest filmmakers in Hollywood. Cofounder of Dreamworks, SKG, he is famous for such films as "E.T. The Extraterrestrial," "Jaws," "Saving Private Ryan," "Munich", "War of the Worlds" and the "Indiana Jones," "Back to the Future" and "Jurassic Park" series.
Country music queen Dolly Parton has won seven Grammy awards and been nominated 42 times and has more than two dozen gold, platinum and multi-platinum records. She has appeared in eight movies and has had several TV specials. She has a theme park and a dinner theater in her native Tennessee and is known for her literacy campaign in Appalachia.
Credit: AP Photo/Chris Pizzello
An R&B singer-songwriter, Smokey Robinson, 66, was front man for the Miracles, one of the first musicians signed to Detroit's famous Motown Records. With the Miracles and his solo career, Robinson had more than 70 Top 40 hits. He also wrote songs for other Motown groups including the Temptations.
Credit: AP Photo/Rene Macura
Andrew Lloyd Webber
One of the most successful composers of the English musical theater, Andrew Lloyd Webber, 58, has composed 16 musicals, including "Evita," "Cats" and "Phantom of the Opera," two film scores and a Requiem Mass. The British-born composer has won Tonys, Grammys, an Oscar, an Emmy, a Golden Globe and six Olivier Awards. In 1992, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II.
Credit: AP Photo/Tina Fineberg
Indian-born musical conductor Zubin Mehta, 70, has directed the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, the Israel Philharmonic, the Barvarian State Orchestra and the Munich Philharmonic. In 2001, he received India's second-highest civilian award.
Credit: GETTY/ Astrid Schmidhuber
Ballet dancer Suzanne Farrell, seen here on the way into the awards gala, was among those honored in 2005. This year's awards program takes place at the Kennedy Center in Washington on Dec. 3, and will be taped for broadcast later that month on CBS. It is preceded by a State Department dinner and followed by a White House reception.