Page last updated at 11:26 GMT, Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Edinburgh Tattoo to go down under

Tattoo in australia in 2005
The Edinburgh Military Tattoo last appeared in Australia in 2005

The Edinburgh Military Tattoo is to return to Australia next February for a series of performances at Sydney Football Stadium.

Up to 1,500 performers will take part in the shows, as part of the Tattoo's 60th anniversary celebrations.

The Tattoo has only left Edinburgh twice in its history - it went to New Zealand in 2000 and Australia in 2005.

Producers said the new shows, set against a replica Edinburgh Castle, would be the biggest ever.

The return visit, which is exclusive to Sydney, will be produced by the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, in association with the Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust and supported by Events New South Wales.

'Theatrical flourish'

It follows The Edinburgh Military Tattoo - A Salute to Australia in 2005.

Titled "The Edinburgh Military Tattoo - Celebrating 60 Years of Valour, Mateship and Glory", the event will take as its central theme the close relationship between Australian and British Defence Forces, who have fought alongside each other in numerous conflicts.

Leo Schofield, the event's creative director, said: "The Edinburgh Military Tattoo attracts the world's best massed pipes and drums. Australians will see the biggest and best Tattoo ever staged, right here in Sydney.

"A centrepiece of the program will reflect the history and camaraderie between Australian and British Defence Forces."

The show, which will be staged against a $1m (456,682) replica of Edinburgh Castle, will be even bigger than last time with an extra "theatrical flourish", developed under the Tattoo's new chief executive and producer, Major General Euan Loudon.

Events NSW estimate the Edinburgh Military Tattoo would bring in more than $15m (6.85m) into the state.

Performance dates and times will be announced later this year, along with details of the bands and highland groups appearing.

However, it was confirmed Top Secret Drum Corps from Basel in Switzerland would be back.



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