ݮƵѰapp

ݮƵѰapp

Welcome to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, a vibrant cultural hub that connects thousands of artists with millions of people each year — in person, online, and in their home communities.

Related Content

Introduction

In 1958, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed bipartisan legislation creating a National Cultural Center in the nation’s capital.  In November of 1962, President and Mrs. Kennedy launched a $30 million fundraising campaign for the Center’s construction.  Former President Eisenhower and his wife Mamie participated in the event which demonstrated the bipartisan support for a world-class center for the performing arts in D. C.  In 1963, President Kennedy signed legislation to extend the fundraising deadline for the Center. 

Two months after President Kennedy’s assassination, by an Act of Congress signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson on January 23, 1964, the nation’s National Cultural Center was designated as a living memorial to President John F. Kennedy. By this Act, President Kennedy’s devotion to the advancement of the performing arts in the United States was recognized. 

Exterior of the Kennedy Center on a sunny day

In 1958, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed bipartisan legislation creating a National Cultural Center in the nation’s capital.  In November of 1962, President and Mrs. Kennedy launched a $30 million fundraising campaign for the Center’s construction.  Former President Eisenhower and his wife Mamie participated in the event which demonstrated the bipartisan support for a world-class center for the performing arts in D. C.  In 1963, President Kennedy signed legislation to extend the fundraising deadline for the Center. 

Two months after President Kennedy’s assassination, by an Act of Congress signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson on January 23, 1964, the nation’s National Cultural Center was designated as a living memorial to President John F. Kennedy. By this Act, President Kennedy’s devotion to the advancement of the performing arts in the United States was recognized. 

New Feature

Hip Hop at 50

For the last 50 years, hip hop has defined American culture across the worlds of business, education, entertainment, fashion, politics, technology, and more. For this golden milestone, the Kennedy Center partnered with Google Arts & Culture to celebrate Hip Hop on the Nation’s Stage.

An Immersive Exhibit

free admission 10 a.m. to midnight

Art and Ideals: President John F. Kennedy is a major permanent exhibit in the massive roof-level Atrium that explores Kennedy’s appreciation and promotion of the arts and why the Kennedy Center came to be the living memorial to him and his ideals.

New Exhibit Honors JFK and the Arts

An Immersive Exhibit

free admission 10 a.m. to midnight

Art and Ideals: President John F. Kennedy is a major permanent exhibit in the massive roof-level Atrium that explores Kennedy’s appreciation and promotion of the arts and why the Kennedy Center came to be the living memorial to him and his ideals.

Explore Our History

See an interactive visual timeline of the Kennedy Center — from its conception in the late 1950s through the opening in 1971 and great moments leading up to what will soon be our 50th anniversary.

Introducing the REACH

Experience Our Future

On September 7, 2019, the Kennedy Center inaugurated its expanded campus with the opening of the REACH. 

Explore the REACH and its programming here.

Other highlights of the 2019–2020 season include the NSO’s performance and recording of all nine Beethoven symphonies under the baton of Music Director Gianandrea Noseda, WNO’s world premiere of Blue, and the return of Broadway Center Stage. At the start of the 2021–2022 season, the Center begins celebrations of its 50th anniversary.

Across all that we do, the Kennedy Center strives to cultivate a culture of inclusiveness, in which our art and our audiences are as rich, diverse, and ever-changing as America itself. Whether you’re visiting our campus in Washington, D.C., tuning in to our Digital Stage, or learning through our education programs, we invite you to experience, explore, and engage with the arts.

A Year at the Kennedy Center

  • 2 million visitors

  • 1.6 million ticket buyers

  • 1.4 million students served

  • 2,200+ performances & exhibits

  • 400+ free performances & events

Fast facts

  • ݮƵѰapp’s operating budget is composed primarily of ticket revenue and private philanthropy. As a living memorial to President John F. Kennedy, the Kennedy Center receives an annual federal appropriation for capital repairs and maintenance of its facilities.
  • ݮƵѰapp has education and outreach programs in all 50 states and 29 countries.
  • ݮƵѰapp Friends is a 600-person strong volunteer corps representing 58 countries and speaking 27 languages.
We acknowledge that the Kennedy Center is standing on the traditional land of the Nacotchtank and Piscataway peoples past and present, and honor with gratitude the land itself and the people who have been the stewards of this land throughout the generations.

More About Us

Exterior of the Kennedy Center on a sunny day

News Room

Get the latest press releases and media.

Two staff members give each other a hug

Careers

Start or continue your career at ݮƵѰapp.