David Letterman wasn’t the only funnyman present when President Barack Obama held the Kennedy Center Honors ceremony. The event was also Obama’s chance to show off his comedic side, and he did so to satisfying results.
“We continue a tradition here at the White House by honoring some extraordinary people who have no business being on the same stage together,” Obama joked, according to USA Today. The honorees included Letterman, Led Zeppelin, Dustin Hoffman, ballerina Natalia Makarova and blues legend Buddy Guy.
Of Hoffman, Obama ribbed, “When ‘The Graduate’ was originally written, the main character was supposed to be Robert Redford — a tall, blond track star. And when Dustin Hoffman auditioned for the part, a crew member handed him a subway token on his way out, saying, ‘here, kid, you’re gonna need this.'”
But it was Led Zeppelin who got one of Obama’s funniest comments of the night. “These guys also redefined the rock and roll lifestyle. We do not have video of this. But there was some hotel rooms trashed and mayhem all around,” the President teased. “So it’s fitting that we’re doing this in a room with windows that are about three inches thick … and Secret Service all around … So, guys, just settle down.”
The 2012 Kennedy Center Honors was taped to air Dec. 26. on CBS.