New Year wouldn’t be complete without the Edinburgh Military Tattoo on the ABC and this year it screens on New Year’s Eve.
Staged in Edinburgh in August, the world-famous event attracts tourists and participants the world over.
This year there are contingents from Singapore, New Zealand and Norway.
The Military Tattoo runs in conjunction with the equally-legendary Edinburgh Fringe Festival, playing twice nightly behind the Edinburgh Castle. As a television event, it is arguably more popular in Australia than the UK.
It airs 8:35pm Wednesday December 31 on ABC1.
A spellbinding spectacle is set for Edinburgh Castle. All the traditional ingredients will be present – massed pipes and drums, massed bands, the Lone Piper along with a number of impressive overseas offerings – but some will be contributing new looks for the 59th Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
Among new elements will be one of the most televised university marching bands in the United States, the 150-piece Golden Eagles from Missouri, while 100 musicians and a cultural item from the Far East are also expected to add an unexpected new dimension to proceedings.
For the third time in the Tattoo’s history, Singapore is to provide participants this year. The Singaporean contingent will consist of a detachment of Gurkha Pipes and Drums together with a 55-strong Police Military Band, an all-woman Police Pipe Band and an animated act reflecting aspects of Singapore’s social and cultural roots.
New features will also include an exciting appearance by pupils from Queen Victoria School in Dunblane, which is set to celebrate its first 100 years in 2008.
From Canada will come a 50-strong Highland Dance troupe who will join forces with the Tattoo’s own Highland Spring Dancers to offer a selection of colourful, complex and compelling dance patterns.
And along with the Massed Pipes and Drums will be two of the foremost services bands in the world, His Majesty The King’s Guards Band – accompanied by its Drill Team – of Norway, and The Massed Bands of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines, 100 musicians drawn from across the UK led by its distinguished Corps of Drums.
The production will also feature the return of the all-girl Lochiel Champion Drill Team from Wellington in New Zealand with an intricate display of precision drill.