WASHINGTON, DC - - The President and Mrs. Clinton are hosting Prime Minister and Mrs. Obuchi at a White House Official Dinner on Monday, May 3, 1999. Prime Minister and Mrs. Obuchi will arrive at the North Portico at 7:15 p.m.
Guests will be received by the President and Mrs. Clinton, and Prime Minister and Mrs. Obuchi, in the Cross Hall of the White House. Following the receiving line, the President and Mrs. Clinton will escort Prime Minister and Mrs. Prodi to the Pavilion on the lower South Grounds of the White House for dinner.
The tables in the Pavilion will be set with gold base plates; cream china with a gold band will be used for service. The table settings will sit on dark celadon table cloths with green satin stripes. Crystal bowls filled with a floating candle and gardenias surrounded by lush spring flowers, including lavender lilacs white peonies, freesia, and ginestra, create each table's centerpiece.
Guests will be entertained in the Pavilion after the dinner by renowned concert pianist Van Cliburn.
OFFICIAL DINNER ENTERTAINMENT:
The world renowned concert pianist, Van Cliburn, was born in Shreveport, Louisiana. He studied piano with his mother for nearly fifteen years before entering The Juilliard School of Music at age seventeen. Already a gifted performer, the young Cliburn skyrocketed to fame in 1958, when he won the First International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. That sensational victory immediately made front-page news around the world, and the triumph was celebrated by a ticker-tape parade in New York City, the only such honor ever given to a classical musician. For the next two decades, Mr. Cliburn remained at the forefront of his contemporaries, performing with virtually every major orchestra and conductor in the great concert halls around the world.
In 1989, following an extended sabbatical, Van Cliburn reemerged onto the concert stage in a series of highly publicized performances. In the last decade, he has led a rigorous schedule of recording sessions, television appearances and concert tours around the world, including a series of concerts in Japan.
Over the course of his career, Van Cliburn has consistently recognized the need to nurture the careers of aspiring young artists. In 1962, at the height of his career, he established the Van Cliburn International Piano, a living legacy to his commitment to aid in the development of young artists. He has also provided scholarships to music schools around the world.
Van Cliburn has graced the stage at he White House for every President since Harry Truman and it is with great pride that the President and Mrs. Clinton honor him tonight as a true American treasure.
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