2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowships Awards Ceremony and Dinner

2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowships Awards Ceremony and Dinner at the Library of Congress on September 14, 2017. Photos by Tom Pich

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Group of 11 men and women pose for the camera. The front row is seated and the back row is standing, for a group photo in the Library of Congress.

Front row (l-r): Modesto Cepeda, Eva Ybarra, Anna Brown Ehlers, Dwight Lamb. Back row (l-r): Chelle Pahunui (accepting on behalf of Cyril Pahinui), NEA Chairman Jane Chu, Norik Astvatsaturov, Phil Wiggins, Thomas Maupin, NEA Director of Folk and Traditional Arts Cliff Murphy, Bucky Halker (accepting on behalf of Ella Jenkins).

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A man sits on a stool in the center of the stage playing the steel drums.

1999 National Heritage Fellow Ellie Mannette opened the ceremony with a steel drum performance.

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A woman and a man stand next to each other on a stage posing for a photo. The man is wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

Armenian repoussé metal artist Norik Astvatsaturov from Wahpeton, North Dakota, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

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A woman and a man stand next to each other on the stage posing for a photo. The man is wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

Bomba and plena musician Modesto Cepeda from San Juan, Puerto Rico, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

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Three women stand next to each other on a stage posing for a picture. The woman in the middle is wearing a medal with red, blue, and gold ribbon.

Chilkat weaver Anna Brown Ehlers from Juneau, Alaska, is presented with a medal in honor of her 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu and Senator Lisa Murkowski.

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NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Bucky Halker on behalf of Ella Jenkins—children’s folk singer and musician from Chicago, Illinois—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Bucky Halker on behalf of Ella Jenkins—children’s folk singer and musician from Chicago, Illinois—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

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Danish button accordionist and Missouri-style fiddler Dwight Lamb from Onawa, Iowa, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

Danish button accordionist and Missouri-style fiddler Dwight Lamb from Onawa, Iowa, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

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A woman stands smiling next to a man on stage who is dancing, wearing a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

Old-time buckdancer Thomas Maupin from Murfreesboro, Tennessee, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

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NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Chelle Pahinui on behalf of Cyril Pahinui—Hawaiian slack key guitarist from Waipahu, Hawaii—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Chelle Pahinui on behalf of Cyril Pahinui—Hawaiian slack key guitarist from Waipahu, Hawaii—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

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A woman and a man stand next to each other on a stage posing for a photo. The man is wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

Acoustic blues harmonica player Phil Wiggins from Takoma Park, Maryland, is presented with a medal in honor of his 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship from NEA Chairman Jane Chu.

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Two women stand next to each other on stage posing for a picture. The woman on the right is wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

A woman and a man stand next to each other on a stage posing for a photo. The man is wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon.

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Phil Wiggins performs for the guests at the dinner in honor of the 2017 National Heritage Fellows.

Phil Wiggins performs for the guests at the dinner in honor of the 2017 National Heritage Fellows.

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Anthony Johnson of the Singing and Praying Bands of Maryland and Delaware--2014 recipients of NEA National Heritage Fellowships--speaks about what receiving the Heritage Fellowship meant to him.

Anthony Johnson of the Singing and Praying Bands of Maryland and Delaware--2014 recipients of NEA National Heritage Fellowships--speaks about what receiving the Heritage Fellowship meant to him.

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Jeff Peterson, an apprentice of 2017 National Heritage Fellow Cyril Pahinui, performs during the dinner.

Jeff Peterson, an apprentice of 2017 National Heritage Fellow Cyril Pahinui, performs during the dinner.

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NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Chelle Pahinui on behalf of Cyril Pahinui—Hawaiian slack key guitarist from Waipahu, Hawaii—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

NEA Chairman Jane Chu presents a medal to Chelle Pahinui on behalf of Cyril Pahinui—Hawaiian slack key guitarist from Waipahu, Hawaii—who was awarded a 2017 NEA National Heritage Fellowship.

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Jeff Peterson, an apprentice of 2017 National Heritage Fellow Cyril Pahinui, performs during the dinner.

Jeff Peterson, an apprentice of 2017 National Heritage Fellow Cyril Pahinui, performs during the dinner.

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A woman wearing a medal with a red, blue, and gold ribbon holds up her hands and claps.

Eva Ybarra and other guests celebrate during the dinner.