One of the five artists celebrated at the 39th annual Kennedy Center Honors event in Washington, D.C. is gospel and blues singer Mavis Staples. Each artist – the others are Argentine pianist Martha Argerich, rock band the Eagles, actor Al Pacino, and musician James Taylor — will be treated to performances by colleagues and those they’ve inspired. English singer Cynthia Erivo will dedicate a performance to Staples.
[Cynthia Erivo and Jennifer Hudson are both featured on The Color Purple album]
Cynthia Erivo won a Tony Award for her performance as Celie Harris in The Color Purple (2016). The 29-year-old made her stage debut in the 2011 UK tour of Sister Act (she played Deloris Van Cartier, Sister Mary Clarence). The Kennedy Center Honors taped celebration will air on Tuesday, December 27 at 9pm on CBS.