Meryl Streep honoured in Washington DC

image captionStreep (centre back) was honoured alongside Yo-Yo Ma, Diamond, Rollins and Cook

Actress Meryl Streep has been feted at the annual Kennedy Center honours in Washington DC, alongside singer Neil Diamond and the cellist Yo-Yo Ma.

Broadway veteran Barbara Cook and jazz saxophonist Sonny Rollins were also recognised by President Obama.

The honorees attended a reception at the White House on Sunday ahead of a gala concert at the Kennedy Center.

The awards, presented annually since 1978, recognise individuals for their contribution to US culture.

"They have different talents, and they've traveled different paths," President Obama said of this year's recipients.

"And yet they belong here together because each... has felt the need to express themselves and share that expression with the world."

Ahead of Sunday's events, the honorees attended a dinner at the State Department hosted by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her husband Bill.

Streep, whose latest film The Iron Lady sees her portray Margaret Thatcher on screen, said she felt "very proud" to be recognised.

"Look where we are, look who's here," she told the Associated Press. "It's overwhelming."

Glenn Close, Emily Blunt and Matthew Broderick were among the stars to pay tribute to the honorees at Sunday's concert.

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