Awards season is coming to a close, but not before BET payed tribute to “black excellence” in Washington, DC at this year’s BET Honors. The 2016 honorees were Lee Daniels (Television and Film Award), Mellody Hobson (Award for Corporate Citizen), Patti LaBelle (Award for Musical Arts), L.A. Reid (Award for Excellence in Entertainment) and Eric Holder (Public Service Award). The Warner Theatre was filled to capacity with celebrities, entertainers and influences there to pay tribute to the honorees; and they received a rousing show. Fantasia belted a soulful tribute to her idol Patti LaBelle who shared how honored she was to still be recognized.
“At the age of 71, to still be honored, that’s a blessing period — just for people to say Patti LaBelle is still relevant,” LaBelle said.
Jussie Smollett sang a fitting rendition of “Man in the Mirror” in tribute to Empire creator Lee Daniels. Daniel’s payed homage to his grandmother and Patti LaBelle who he credits for his sobriety.
“La, that I’m even here with you tonight, when you were responsible for me getting off drugs, I love you.
“I called her up one night at three o’clock in the morning. (I was) babbling, babbling, babbling. I was high as a kite. She said, ‘Lee, you know Jesus?’”
Usher sang in honor of a man who is a large part of his musical success, L.A. Reid., saying that he was important “for black culture, for music, for entrepreneurship in the South.”
The current racial climate was not to be ignored. Jussie’s performance included images of protesters holding up signs that read “Black Lives Matter” and “End Racism.”
There were so many more memorable moments, but you’ll have to tune in to the 2016 BET Honors on March 14th at 8pm on BET for the rest!