In what has now become tradition, the newly crowned winner of AMERICAN IDOL Season 13 will make their first appearance performing the “National Anthem” to open the 25th Annual NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT on Sunday, May 25th.

Also joining the line-up is Grammy Award-winning country music artist Jennifer Nettles, who will offer a musical salute, with 100 recently returned veterans from Afghanistan on stage, as a grateful nation recognizes the more than 2.6 million men and women who have served, and are currently serving, over the past 13 years.

Distinguished American statesman General Colin L. Powell USA (Ret.) will lead the tribute to our servicemen and women with an inspiring “Welcome Home” to thank our veterans, as they begin to come home from Afghanistan, for their valor. The war in Afghanistan has set a milestone as the longest conflict in our nation’s history where our best and bravest have shed their blood in the war against terrorism.

Broadcast live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, the 25th anniversary broadcast of the NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT also welcomes veteran actor Gerald McRaney (HOUSE OF CARDS) to the line-up. The event will be co-hosted for the ninth year by Tony Award-winner Joe Mantegna and Emmy Award-winner Gary Sinise, acclaimed actors who have dedicated themselves to veterans’ causes and supporting our troops in active service. The all-star cast also includes: two-time Academy and Emmy Award-winning actress Dianne Wiest; country music sensation and THE VOICE 2013 winner Danielle Bradbery; Broadway and television star Megan Hilty; musical prodigy and classical crossover star Jackie Evancho; and world-renowned tenor Anthony Kearns; in performance with the National Symphony Orchestra under the direction of top pops conductor Jack Everly.

The multi award-winning program airs on PBS Sunday, May 25, 2014, from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m., before a concert audience of hundreds of thousands, millions more at home, as well as to our troops serving around the world on the American Forces Network.

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