Jimmy Carter photo

Visit of President Perez of Venezuela Remarks at the Entertainment Honoring President Perez.

June 28, 1977

First of all, I'd like to welcome all the guests who've come here to be with us tonight with great faith in the weather, which I hope will be justified.

I would like to express my thanks at the beginning for the combined choirs of Wheaton College and Union College. They've just returned from a long tour in Venezuela, which they said did not seem long. They had made 11 performances in 11 days. They went there to honor a young choir group of 54 Venezuelans who were killed in the terrible airplane accident in the Azores. And this to us is a very good additional demonstration of the sharing of culture and beauty between our country and that of Venezuela.

The choir director has just informed me that they were received with open arms and deep appreciation and a mutual expression of the love for music which can cross national boundaries' without detecting any impediment whatsoever. So, I do want to thank you both for being here and for this wonderful choir. And they will stay to see the ballet which will follow.

I would also like to introduce the two performers who will now entertain us, accompanied by the Marine Band, Cynthia Gregory and Ted Kivitt, who begin by dancing "Giselle."

I've tried to think of some parallels between the performance tonight and our public servants, like myself and President Perez and the Members of Congress. The dance is obviously strong, forceful. People watch it with great interest, as is the case in politics. It's sometimes unpredictable, sometimes with a great deal of enthusiasm.

I think I'll abandon the parallel at this point--[laughter]--and talk about almost unanimous admiration of the observers. I think I'll talk about grace and beauty, and I think all of you will be inspired by the performance of these fine two internationally known dancers.

Following that, they will dance another selection, "Grand Pas Classique," and I think that you will be very pleased at this performance.

We are very grateful to have you here. And I think that this is the first time we've had a chance to have entertainment outside on the lawn. But it's a particularly beautiful setting, and I think that the beauty of the setting will be matched and even exceeded by the beauty of the performances.

Thank you very much.

Note: The President spoke at approximately 10:20 p.m. on the South Lawn of the White House.

Jimmy Carter, Visit of President Perez of Venezuela Remarks at the Entertainment Honoring President Perez. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/244102

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