FAQ: 2022 Memorial Day Concert

While the public can’t attend the Memorial Day Concert in person this year because the Capitol Complex has a phased COVID-19 re-opening plan, the event will be performed live at the Capitol on May 29 after two years of virtual shows.

Here are the details.


  • Q: What's the National Memorial Day Concert?
  • The National Memorial Day Concert is an annual live event with musical performances and tributes to honor women and men in uniform, veterans, their families and others who give back to the country. A three-decade long tradition in D.C., the event is hosted by actors Joe Mantegna and Gary Sinise this year. The pair hosted the concert in 2021, too.

    Musical performances feature the National Symphony Orchestra.

    The event will be held at 8 p.m. on May 29.

  • Q: Which actors are participating?
  • Actor Dennis Haysbert will help honor the memory of General Colin Powell. Organizers say Powell played an important role in the concert for over a quarter of a century by “speaking to the nation about the sacred meaning of Memorial Day, reminding us of the debt owed to all those who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our liberty and freedom, and calling on the nation to help and support those who served and their families.”

    Gil Birmingham will pay tribute to the more than 58,000 American who lost their lives in the Vietnam war and the war’s veterans. He will tell the story of combat medic Francis Whitebird who served two tours in Vietnam.

    Jean Smart and Joe Mantegna are honoring gold star families through sharing the story of Maj. General Mark Graham, USA (Ret.) and his wife Carol who lost their two sons in less than eight months.

    Mary McCormack is featured in the tribute to women who served in World War II, both in uniform and on the home front.

    Gary Sinise is presenting a medal of honor tribute which goes to living recipients. He’s also celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Lincoln Memorial being built on the National Mall.

  • Q: Who is performing?
  • A number of artists are performing. Here’s a snapshot:

    • Lea Salonga, the singing voice behind Mulan
    • Norm Lewis from Scandal
    • Country music singer and U.S. Army veteran Craig Morgan
    • Grammy-winning singer Rhiannon Giddens
    • Tony Award-winning Broadway star Brian Stokes Mitchell
    • American Idol alum Pia Toscano
    • The National Symphony Orchestra is being directed by Jack Everly

    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley is also slated to deliver a special message.

    On the side of service members, the following groups will participate:

    • 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, the Armed Forces Color Guard and Service Color Teams provided by the Military District of D.C.
  • Q: Where are the traffic and parking impacts?
  • There are some traffic restrictions, road closures and parking impacts around the U.S. Capitol Grounds that begin mid-May and last until June 2.

    Here’s the latest, according to U.S. Capitol Police.

    Wednesday, May 18 through Thursday, May 26 at 12:01 a.m.

    • Road closures
      • Unit Block of First Street NW/SW between Pennsylvania Avenue NW and Maryland Avenue SW will have the following restrictions:
        • One-way traffic Northbound from 6:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
        • One-way traffic Southbound from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.

    Friday, May 27 at 12:01 a.m. through Monday, May 30 at 4 a.m.

    • Road closures
      • First Street between Constitution Avenue NW and Independence Avenue SW
      • Pennsylvania Avenue between First Street NW and 3rd Street NW
      • Maryland Avenue between First Street SW and 3rd Street SW
    • Parking restrictions
      • Pennsylvania Avenue between First Street NW and 3rd Street NW for all areas.
      • Maryland Avenue between First Street SW and 3rd Street SW for all areas.
      • First Street between Constitution Avenue NW and Independence Avenue SW for all areas.
      • Note: First Street between Pennsylvania Avenue NW and Maryland Avenue SW will continue to be closed until approximately 6:00 pm.
    • Traffic restrictions
      • Tour buses will not be able to access the normal drop locations and must relocate to alternate areas, to include:
        • Independence Avenue between 3rd Street SW and 4th Street SW

    Friday, May 27 at 5 p.m. through Monday, May 30, at 4 a.m.

    • Parking restrictions
      • Independence Avenue between First Street and 2nd Street SW, north curb only
      • Washington Avenue between First Street SW and Independence Avenue SW, north curb only
      • New Jersey Avenue between Constitution Avenue, NW and C Street NW
      • Note: These restricted areas will be reserved for concert support and staff parking with appropriate event placards.

    Monday, May 30, at 6 p.m. through Thursday June 2, at 7 p.m.

    • Road closures
      • Unit Block of First Street NW/SW between Pennsylvania Avenue NW and Maryland Avenue SW will have the following restrictions:
        • One-way traffic Northbound from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m.
        • One-way traffic Southbound from 5 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Jessica Kronzer

Jessica Kronzer graduated from James Madison University in May 2021 after studying media and politics. She enjoys covering politics, advocacy and compelling human-interest stories.

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