All photos by Terry Murden, DB Media Services
Amid the ever-changing menu of the Edinburgh Festivals, one “act” has remained a constant. Undiminished by the pandemic and offering a blessed relief from some of the grim realities of life, the Tattoo is a burst of all that is good about pomp and ceremony, a 90-minute display of music, dance and pyrotechnics.
As usual there is a mix of tradition and modern, the Massed Pipes and Drums emerging from the Castle drawbridge to provide the audience with a rousing welcome to Scotland in they way that most overseas visitors want to see the country represented. Yes, we may aspire to be a nation engulfed in developing artificial intelligence and bioscience, but nothing says you’re in Scotland louder than the skirl of the bagpipes.
Then it is quickly into the American swing era as the trombones, trumpets and singers of the United States Air Force Band get us ‘in the mood’. This was one of the highlights, alongside an exquisite performance of Scottish dancing.
Aside from the music and dance, this is a colourful evening with performers ‘magically’ changing costume colour mid-dance. But none brightened the show more than the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force Steel Orchestra with their ostentatious displays of feathers and wings.
While the show could have benefited from an element of humour and maybe some acrobatics, the well-oiled machine delivers a seamless turnaround from one slick act to the next.
Castle Esplanade until 26 August