The Kennedy Center

KC Spring Gala

2017 Kennedy Center Spring Gala: Come Together: A Celebration of John Lennon

Monday, May 8, 2017 8:15 PM

JFK Centennial Celebration

The Kennedy Center 2017 Spring Gala pays tribute to musical icon John Lennon as artists influenced by his work come together under the direction of T Bone Burnett to perform the Lennon songbook.

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2017 Kennedy Center Spring Gala
Come Together: A Celebration of John Lennon

The Kennedy Center pays tribute to musical icon John Lennon on Monday, May 8, 2017 in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. The evening's program celebrates the legendary late singer's indelible impact on musical history from his skyrocketing start with the Beatles in 1960 through his celebrated and sometimes controversial career as a solo artist until his untimely death in 1980. His musical influence transcends a single genre or generation, leaving us with visionary albums like John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band, Imagine and Double Fantasy, and timeless ballads such as "Give Peace a Chance," "Working Class Hero," and "Imagine." Hosted by actor David Duchovny, the gala performance features Corinne Bailey Rae, Judy Collins, Shawn Colvin, Jim JamesAmos Lee, Taj Mahal, Esperanza Spalding, Steven van Zandt, and Rennie Harris Puremovement. The executive music director of the 2017 Spring Gala is T Bone Burnett, and the music director is David Mansfield. The event is Co-Chaired by Bruce and Joyce Gates and Jim and Heather Johnson.

The Gala will also feature the second annual presentation of the Kennedy Center Award for the Human Spirit, commemorating the seminal contributions made by President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy to cultural life in the United States. The award will recognize two recipients who have had an enduring impact on the advancement of arts and culture. The 2017 recipients of the Award for the Human Spirit are Distinguished Philanthropists Joan and Sanford (Sandy) Weill for their magnanimous generosity to performing arts institutions across the U.S., and Citizen Artists Afa and Aaron Dworkin for their work leading and founding the Sphinx Organization, a Detroit-based organization dedicated to transforming lives through the power of diversity in the arts.

Concert-only tickets for the 2017 Spring Gala Come Together: A Celebration of John Lennon are on sale now. 

For information about the Special Event portion of the Spring Gala, including a private cocktail reception, dinner, and the 'Til Midnight Party following the show, click here. The Special Events Office can also be reached at (202) 416-8338 or email

Performance Timing: Approximately 1 hour, 40 minutes, with no intermission.