As part of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations for the Queen, more than 1000 musicians, pipers, drummers, singers and dancers from four continents will be part of the line up at the 62nd Tattoo at Edinburgh from August 3-25.
The invitation to Scotland will be the first time a permanent forces ADF Band has performed at the event in Edinburgh. Formed by 18 members from each service, the 54 talented musicians of the ADF Band will play, sing and dance to music iconic to Australia from the colonial times through to pop songs and rock and roll by Kylie Minogue and AC/DC.
Training for the display, which was designed by Band Corps Regimental Sergeant Major, Warrant Officer Class One Vaughan Grant, was held at HMAS Harman. The main challenge for the musicians from the three services was learning a unique new form of drill.
The musical arrangement has been skilfully crafted by Sergeant Greg Peterson, Defence Force School of Music, to ensure the music maintains its integrity and flow throughout several transitions.
Contingent commander Lieutenant Colonel Gordon Lambie, Director of Music – Army, said music celebrating the 30th anniversary of the film The Man from Snowy River would also feature during the six-minute 40-second performance.
“This is a major contribution from the ADF for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in one of the world’s most recognised public arenas,” he said.
“Performing at the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo is the pinnacle of a Defence musician’s career – something we all strive and hope for.”
For some musicians it is a dramatic start to their military careers. Talented Army vocalist Musician Mark Nivet finished training at Kapooka in early July and Navy’s Nathanael Maxwell, who plays the tenor horn, has only been with his band for two months.
Tuba player Musician Angus Charlton, of the Australian Army Band (AAB) Brisbane, said being a part of the tattoo was a childhood dream.
“I never thought I would see the day of getting this gig. The marching part of the performance is a lot of fun, especially when we get the intricate bits right,” he said.
Trombone player Corporal Megan Dodds, of AAB, Brisbane, said it was a fantastic experience to be able to represent Australia at such a well-known event.
“My favourite part of the performance is singing and dancing with the rock band,” she said.
“I have been learning and memorising my music for close to a month so the training at HMAS Harman was where it came together.”
Originally published in Army News Ed 1287.