2024 National Memorial Day Concert Airs On PBS

Members of the U.S. Armed Forces salute at the NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT. Courtesy of Capital Concerts.

The annual National Memorial Day Concert will air live on PBS this evening in a broadcast hosted by both Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise.

In addition to Mantegna and Sinise, the 35th anniversary broadcast will feature appearances from Bryan Cranston, Cynthia Erivo, Jena Malone, BD Wong, Patina Miller, Gary LeVox, Mary McCormack, Jamey Johnson, and Ruthie Ann Miles. As usual, Maestro Jack Everly will conduct the National Symphony Orchestra.

America’s national night of remembrance, PBS’ National Memorial Day Concert, returns live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol for a special 35th anniversary broadcast. A tradition unlike anything else on television, the 90-minute broadcast honors the service of our men and women in uniform, military families and all those who have given their lives for our country through a unique blend of dramatic storytelling and uplifting music. Hosted by Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise, both steadfast champions of veterans’ causes and active service members, the National Memorial Day Concert will air on PBS and stream nationwide on PBS and YouTube on Sunday, May 26, 2024 at 8:00 p.m. E.T. Please check local listings for details.

“For 35 years, our mission has been to bring the country together to remember the fallen, commemorate the real meaning of the holiday, and pay tribute to generations of our American heroes and their families,” said Executive Producer Michael Colbert, Capital Concerts. “It is an honor to share this annual tradition of remembrance, healing and community at the U.S. Capitol.”

Jack Everly conducts the National Symphony Orchestra before the on-site audience on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol.
Jack Everly conducts the National Symphony Orchestra before the on-site audience on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Courtesy of Capital Concerts.

The 2024 National Memorial Day Concert will feature the following segments:

World War II Tribute – featuring Bryan Cranston.
A salute to the millions of Americans who served the nation in World War II in uniform and on the home front. On the 80th anniversary of 1944, a pivotal year in the war, the tribute will commemorate hard fought battles in the Pacific and European theaters that secured the allied path to victory. As part of this special segment, the concert will share the story of U.S. Army Veteran John T. “Jack” Moran, a soldier in the Battle of the Bulge, and his remembrance of friends who fought alongside him to save the world from tyranny. Members of this Greatest Generation will be honored on stage at the United States Capitol.

Gold Star Families Remembrance – with BD Wong.
The concert will remember our fallen heroes and Gold Star families with the story of Vietnam Veteran and Gold Star Father Allen Hoe, who followed generations of his proud warrior family into military service. Hoe’s two sons continued the family legacy serving honorably in the U.S. Army, and First Lieutenant Nainoa K. Hoe was tragically killed in combat in Operation Iraqi Freedom. This is a story of honor and remembrance, the search for peace after his son’s death, and a chance meeting at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Honoring a Generation’s Service – with Jena Malone.
Following 20 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, the concert will explore the challenges faced by a generation of wounded, ill and injured veterans who carry visible and invisible wounds of war through the moving story of U.S. Marine Corps Veteran and amputee Kirstie Ennis, an inspiring adaptive athlete who carries with her the memory of her fallen brothers and sisters in arms. The concert will share her journey after a life-changing injury on deployment, and her mission to bring awareness and encourage others to reach out for help.

Military salute overlooking the skyline of Washington, D.C.
Military salute overlooking the skyline of Washington, D.C. Courtesy of Capital Concerts.

This inspiring night of remembrance will also feature performances by: Cynthia Erivo; Gary LeVox of RASCAL FLATTS; Jamey Johnson, who served eight years in the Marine Corps Reserve; Mary McCormack; Ruthie Ann Miles; Patina Miller; and the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly, celebrating fifteen seasons with the concert.

In tribute to all the members of the US armed forces, the annual audience favorite Salute to Services features the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Service Color Teams. Also participating are members from The U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, The U.S. Army Chorus, The Soldiers’ Chorus of the U.S. Army Field Band, The U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters, The U.S. Air Force Singing Sergeants, and the Armed Forces Color Guard provided by the Military District of Washington, D.C.

The National Memorial Day Concert will air May 26, 2024, from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m. E.T. on PBS, as well as to US troops serving around the world on American Forces Network. The concert will also be streaming on PBS and YouTube and available as Video on Demand, May 26 to June 9, 2024.

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.