There were moments I loved; but I was not enthralled throughout.
A tattoo is military performing exercises as entertainment. Therefore lots of marching. Some dancing. Features lots of people all synchronised so it, is very clever alas once, I had seen a minute or two of a particular routine, I felt like I had seen it and did not need to see more; yet it would continue.
The tattoo takes place in the foreground of the castle, in a specially erected arena. Therefore it is a dramatic backdrop. This backdrop is used to project images on to.
The routines were accompanied by drumming and or bag pipes or trumpets. No lyrics. Therefore not my favourite type of music. My favourite moments had better music!
100years of the RAF was commentated.
I loved the bees 🐝 projections.
The Swiss segment was good. There were cigs and clock faces to represent that part of Swiss heritage. Formalas including E =mc2 were projected as Einstein came up with the formula in Switerzland. Therefore, I did learn something at the tattoo; a further google search has taught me Einstein was German but, was in Switzerland 1902 – 1909 when he was a young man, in order to avoid military service.
In terms of my favourite moments, firstly near the end there were fireworks over the castle accompanied by Mr blue skies; more my kind of music and I love fireworks and these were good fireworks! After the fireworks the audience sang God Save the Queen; as it was such an international audience this was a little quiet and hard to follow. For me the event would have been improved by big screens; the words of God Save the Queen could have been on them and they could have zoomed in on the performers to give a more personal perspective and mixed in different images; like a pop concert. This was very different to what I would normally choose to watch!
Following God Save the Queen there was Auld Lang Sie which all the audience knew or picked up quickly. We all linked arms and it was amazing seeing so many people bobbing up and down to auld Lang sie; more people than I have ever been part of! It was like new year! I would have preferred to have fireworks after auld lang sie as a dramatic climax. I’m sure there is some symbolic reason why it is done the way it is done. I know nothing; the tattoo has been going on for years for weeks every August and thousands of people attend and people return to see time and time again; so they can not be wrong. It just felt a little anti climatic ending just watching military performers file out of the arena.
To clarify, I went for the cheapest possible ticket on preview night. That meant that I was sidewards on to the castle albeit really near it. However, if I was looking at the castle, I could not see the performers in the base of the arena and if I was looking at performers in the base; I could only see castle out of corner of eye. Therefore my back hurt from sitting twisted in awkward position. I imagine the best seats to get the full effect of performers at base of arena and the projections on the castle are the ones looking straight on to the castle; however they will also be perhaps double what I paid and personally, I would not have wanted to pay more.
It also rained in this mostly outdoor arena. Therefore sitting in the rain probably amplified by feelings that parts dragged. I think at for the seats at the very top of the stand opposite the castle there may have been a cover over; perhaps these are the most expensive seats?
To summarise, I’m pleased I went, but I would not necessarily rush to go again anytime soon. I think there is still a few tickets left for this year’s tattoo; I would not advise against going based on what I have said. If you go, it will at least have moments; it just depends how much you want to pay for moments!