Mayor Rahm Emanuel and wife Amy Rule popped up at the White House Sunday to attend a glitzy star-filled reception for Kennedy Center honorees. The trip to Washington was not on Emanuel's public schedule, but it should have. David Axelrod, President Obama's top strategist, is also at the reception.
The White House traditionally has the stars being honored at the Kennedy Center over before the event itself. Pool reporter Donovan Slack filed the report from the East Room with hosts Obama and First Lady Michelle:
From the pool report: "Roughly 250 seats set up. Pine garlands draped over windows and doors, dias framed by two Christmas trees.Spotted in audience: Rep Nancy Pelosi, Smokey Robinson(2006 honoree), Vicki Kennedy, Jean Kennedy Smith, Caroline Kennedy, actress Christine Baranski, actor Stanley Tucci (Devil Wears Prada, Julie and Julia), actress Michelle Lee (Knots Landing), Rahm Emanuel and Amy Rule, composer Sir Andre Previn, David Axelrod, Rep John Mica (R-FL), violinist Itzhak Perlman, Robert DeNiro (!!), Sara Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick, Transportation Secretary Ray Lahood, Diane Sawyer, actor John Krasinski (The Office) and Emily Blunt, john Lithgow (!), CBS' Julie Chen and Les Moonves.
(Honorees entered at 5;25- Barbara Cook, Neil Diamond, Yo Yo Ma, Sonny Rollins, Meryl Streep -see below for more info)POTUS and FLOTUS entered at 5:28pm.POTUS remarks (see transcript for exact quotes) In general he talked about the arts, expressing oneself - he joked about his own dance moves ending up on YouTube.
He spoke about each of the honorees, who he said are "5 giants from the world of the arts" being honored for "a lifetime of greatness." Of Yo Yo Ma he said, "One honoree is something of a regular here at the White House. We need to give him a room." Then POTUS joked that one thing about Yo Yo Ma is that "everybody likes him. "You've got to give me some tips," he said turning to Ma.Remarks ended at 5:44pm, POTUS and FLOTUS (strapless bright blue mermaid- shaped gown) left room. Pool escorted out. Holding.
From the Kennedy Center press release: "Recipients to be honored at the 34th annual national celebration of the arts are: singer Barbara Cook, singer and songwriter Neil Diamond, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, saxophonist and composer Sonny Rollins, and actress Meryl Streep."