Juilliard School honorees include Daniel Day-Lewis, Dawn Upshaw

Daniel Day-Lewis at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills in 2012.
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Daniel Day-Lewis will soon have a new role to obsessively inhabit -- recipient of an honorary doctoral degree from the Juilliard School in New York.

The arts school said it also would bestow commencement honors this year on opera singer Dawn Upshaw, pianist Alfred Brendel, choreographer Ohad Naharin and jazz musician Sonny Rollins.

In addition, Juilliard said it would include writer Harriet Heyman and technology venture capitalist Michael Moritz among the honorees at its commencement ceremony on May 24 at Alice Tully Hall. The couple has donated money to the school, including a recent $5-million gift toward music education for young students.


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This year’s commencement speaker is to be actress Laura Linney, a Juilliard graduate from 1990.

Day-Lewis, who won his third Academy Award this year for “Lincoln,” is to receive the school’s honorary doctorate in fine arts. In its announcement on Tuesday, Juilliard cited the actor’s film and theater credits, including his 1989 run in “Hamlet” at London’s National Theatre.

The actor abruptly walked out of a performance of the Shakespeare play and has yet to return to the stage.

Last year, Juilliard bestowed honorary degrees on James Earl Jones, choreographer Peter Martins, conductor William Christie, playwright Athol Fugard and singer Nancy Wilson, as well as authors Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith.


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