STAGE TUBE: Gina Rodriguez Brings Rita Moreno to Tears with Kennedy Center Honors Tribute

Earlier this month, in a star-studded celebration on the Kennedy Center Opera House stage, Seiji Ozawa, Tony Award winner Rita Moreno (WEST SIDE STORY), Carole King, George Lucas, and Tony Award winner Cicely Tyson (THE GIN GAME, THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL) were saluted by great performers from Hollywood and the arts capitals of the world on THE 38TH ANNUAL KENNEDY CENTER HONORS.

JANE THE VIRGIN's Gina Rodriguez launched the event (which aired tonight) with a tribute to Rita Moreno. Watch her emotional speech below!

"You gave me hope, you gave me a reason to fight and to speak up, you gave me a voice, and how can I thank you? I'm not sure how, but I can tell you this: When you followed your dreams, Rita, you gave me the allowance to follow mine," Rodriguez said. "You are my icon, my living legend and what matters most is, my friend."

The Honors recipients are recognized for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts -- whether in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures or television -- and are selected by the Center's Board of Trustees. The primary criterion in the selection process is excellence. The Honors are not designated by art form or category of artistic achievement; over the years, the selection process has produced a balance among the various arts and artistic disciplines.




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