HBO and Starbucks Coffee Company announced today they will host The Concert For Valor, a first-of-its-kind concert to honor the courage and sacrifice of America's veterans and their families on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., to be presented live on HBO this Veterans Day, Tuesday, November 11 (7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. PT).
The concert will feature a broad array of talent from the worlds of music and entertainment, including METALLICA, Eminem, Jamie Foxx, Dave Grohl, John Oliver, Rihanna, Bruce Springsteen, Carrie Underwood and ZAC BROWN BAND, as well as special appearances by Meryl Streep, Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg, among many others.
The Concert For Valor will provide a national stage for ensuring that veterans and their families know that their fellow Americans' gratitude is genuine. Millions of people, including veterans, active duty service members, their families and Americans from all walks of life are expected to watch the free concert in person or on television, with the goal of raising awareness for veterans service organizations dedicated to education, wellness, reemployment and reintegration. The event will be presented from the National Mall between the Capitol and the Washington Monument, and HBO will offer its affiliates the opportunity to open the signal, allowing nonsubscribers to view the special. Former U.S. Secretary of Defense and Starbucks board member Robert Gates and former Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen are serving in an advisory capacity with regard to veterans outreach and veteran service organizations that will be recipients of concert donations.
The live event will be executive produced by Gary Goetzman, Tom Hanks and Joel Gallen, who will also direct. Hanks, who devoted his time and talent to support the construction of the World War II Memorial, has, with Goetzman, executive produced such projects as the Emmy-winning HBO miniseries "The Pacific", "Band Of Brothers" and "John Adams", as well as the HBO music specials "The 25th Anniversary Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Concert" and the recent "2014 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Induction Ceremony", both of which were directed by Gallen.
HBO chairman and CEO Richard Plepler said: "We are honored to play a small role to help raise awareness and support for our service men and women. Their immeasurable sacrifice deserves our nation's gratitude. This event will not only celebrate their service, but help remind Americans of the many challenges they face on and off the battlefield. We are delighted to join with Starbucks in our mutual effort to pay tribute to our veterans and those currently serving in the military."
Starbucks chairman, president and CEO Howard Schultz said: "The post-9/11 years have brought us the longest period of sustained warfare in our nation's history. The less than one percent of Americans who volunteered to serve during this time have afforded the rest of us remarkable freedoms — but that freedom comes with a responsibility to understand their sacrifice, to honor them and to appreciate the skills and experience they offer when they return home. As many now seek reemployment, now is the time to offer them opportunities to work in our communities to do what they do best: solve problems and lead with selfless service. The Concert For Valor represents a significant and historic opportunity to demonstrate our country's potential to come together as a nation, and do right by those who have done so much for us. They've stepped up. Now it's our turn."
Last November, Starbucks committed to hiring at least 10,000 veterans and active military spouses over the next five years. In April, the Schultz Family Foundation, co-founded by Schultz and his wife, Sheri, committed $30 million to support veterans' transition to civilian life. Schultz is also co-authoring "For Love Of Country", which reports on the sacrifices veterans have made, the bravery and leadership they demonstrate, and the huge economic benefit and opportunity that transitioning veterans bring to American communities and companies. The book, co-written with Rajiv Chandrasekaran of the Washington Post, will be published by Knopf and available nationwide in early November. The authors will donate proceeds from the sale of the book to veterans service organizations.
HBO has a long history of original programming devoted to supporting veterans and examining veterans' experiences from diverse perspectives. In addition to the miniseries "Band Of Brothers" and "The Pacific", the network has presented the original movies "Taking Chance" and "The Tuskegee Airmen", the miniseries "Generation Kill", and the documentaries "Alive Day Memories: Home From Iraq", "Wartorn 1861-2010", "Baghdad ER", "Section 60: Arlington National Cemetery", "Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1" and the upcoming "The Last Patrol", among many others.
HBO and Starbucks are proud to present The Concert For Valor with the support of the Trust For The National Mall. As the official nonprofit partner of the National Park Service dedicated to restoring and improving the National Mall, the Trust is committed to preserving the sacred space where America's military veterans are honored and free speech — both spoken and sung — is protected. The Trust will provide event volunteers and logistical assistance to support the concert and preserve the grounds of the National Mall.
While less than one percent of American adults serve in the U.S. military today, there are currently more than 20 million American veterans. This includes more than 2.5 million 9/11-era veterans who are facing a range of challenges as they make the transition back to civilian life.