The 34th annual National Memorial Day Concert returns this Sunday, May 28 at 7:00 pm and 8:30 pm on WTTW. This national night of remembrance explores the meaning of the holiday with personal stories, tributes, and musical performances. Actors Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise co-host this three-decades-long tradition, which has an all-star lineup listed below.
There will also be performances and appearances by the National Symphony Orchestra, the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, the U.S. Army Chorus, the U.S. Navy Band Sea Chanters, the U.S. Air Force Singing Sergeants, and the Soldiers’ Chorus of the United States Army Field Band.
Mantegna is an actor known for House of Games, Searching for Bobby Fisher, Godfather III, and his Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated role of Dean Martin in The Ratpack. He was awarded the Tony and Joseph Jefferson Award for his acclaimed performance as Richard Roma in David Mamet's Pulitzer Prize-winning play Glengarry Glen Ross.
Sinise’s stage, film and television career has spanned more than four decades. Sinise is one of the co-founders of Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company, where he served as Artistic Director for seven years. His well-known performance as Lt. Dan in Forrest Gump earned him a slew of big nominations, including a Best Supporting Actor nomination. His other film credits include Apollo 13, Ransom, Snake Eyes, Impostor, and The Green Mile.
Adkins is a country music singer who has sold over 11 million albums in his storied career. A Grand Ole Opry member for nearly two decades, the Louisiana native is known for his dynamic baritone, fiery live performance, and notable roles as an actor in film and TV.
S. Epatha Merkerson
Merkerson is an actor whose career has spanned theater, television, and film. She is best known for her 17-season run as Lieutenant Anita Van Buren on NBC’s Law & Order. She also plays Sharon Goodwin, a hospital administrator on Chicago Med, now in its 8th season.
Slattery is an actor known for his Emmy Award nominated performance as Roger Sterling on Mad Men, as well as numerous television roles on series such as Documentary Now, Arrested Development, Sex and the City, Veep, and The Good Fight. He’s also appeared in films such as Spotlight, Ant Man, and Flags of Our Fathers.
Hill is an actor known for playing Charlie Young in The West Wing, Burton ‘Gus’ Guster in the USA Network comedy Psych, and numerous other film and television roles. He can currently be seen starring as Bill Williams in ABC’s Peabody Award-winning reimagining of The Wonder Years.
Adams is a contemporary gospel and inspirational musician. With thirteen releases, Adams has won four Grammy Awards. She is also the host of a nationally-syndicated radio show called The Yolanda Adams Morning Show.
McCormack is a film, television and stage actor. She was nominated for a Tony for her role in Broadway’s Boeing-Boeing, and she has appeared on The West Wing, Heels, The Newsroom, Scandal, House of Lies, and more.
Jo Dee Messina
Messina is a country music artist whose career began with the single, “Heads Carolina, Tails California.” Following the success of her debut, Jo Dee posted nine No. 1 hits and sixteen Top 40 songs and was honored by the ACM Awards, CMA Awards, and GRAMMY Awards.
The War and Treaty
The War and Treaty is made up of husband and wife duo Michael Trotter, Jr. and Tanya Trotter. They formed in 2014 and are known for their music that blends blues, soul, country, and rock. The War and Treaty will join Chris Stapleton on the All-American Road Show Tour this summer.
Jacobs is a singer and actor who has been performing since he was a child. He is best known for his work in the box office smash, IT Chapter 1; Netflix’s Purple Hearts, and Sneakerella.
Phillips is a musician who first rose to prominence as the winner of season 11 of American Idol. Since then, Phillip has become a multi-platinum selling recording artist known for his song “Home.”
Everly is the Principal Pops Conductor of the Indianapolis and Baltimore Symphony Orchestras, Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa). He has conducted the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall, and The Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom Music Center.
Hilty is known for her portrayal of Ivy Lynn in the NBC Musical Drama Smash. Before that, Hilty started her career on Broadway, where she earned a Tony Award nomination. She has also made appearances on shows like Difficult People and The Good Fight.