President Barack Obama was prepared to risk the wrath of wife and First Lady Michelle at the Kennedy Centre Honours - by admitting he had a crush on one of the recipients, actress Meryl Streep. Obama was in jovial mood as he awarded Streep, songwriter Neil Diamond, singer Barbara Cook and composer Sonny Rollins their awards at the 34th ceremony, and the UK's Daily Telegraph reported that he had kind words for the 62 year-old actress, smiling broadly as he said "Meryl Streep, anybody who saw The French Lieutenant's Woman had a crush on her."
Michelle need not worry though as the President was hugely complimentary about all the recipients, stating of Neil Diamond for instance, "It's true - everybody sings Neil Diamond songs no matter how many drinks they've had." The awards are hugely prestigious in America, with winners being recognised for their lifetime contribution to their art. Caroline Kennedy, daughter of former US President John F. Kennedy, hosted the show which is ran as a part memorial to her father, and was quick note to one particular personal connection with one of this year's featured stars, noting that Diamond's classic hit 'Sweet Caroline' was named after her.
For Streep, who is tipped to win an Oscar for her role as Margaret Thatcher in the biopic 'The Iron Lady', the occasion was "overwhelming," though she expressed regret her late parents couldn't be there to see it. "They're the two people on Earth who would have loved to see this more than anybody," she said.