AND AGAIN, THE VOORTHUIZEN MILITARY TATTOO WAS A HUGE SUCCESS
The 8th Edition was honoured by the presence of many VIPs from around the world, Tattoo Producers from Ystad (Sweden), Basel (CH) and Germany, members of Intl. Military Music Society (IMMS), and many more. Under the Musical Direction of Major Steve Barnwell the show captured the audience and the standing ovations to the Bands were well-deserved. Many many thanks to everyone!
TATTOO VOORTHUIZEN: BEAUTIFUL SHOWS, NOT ENOUGH SPECTATORS
“A fantastic event that more people should have enjoyed.” With these words chairman George Alblas of the Voorthuizen Military Tattoo foundation looks back at the Tattoo that took place in Voorthuizen last Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Enormous stands were build that could seat up to six thousand visitors. How many people actually visited the show is something Alblas doesn’t know yet. He estimates that between 10.000 and 15.000 people came to see the show. “I hope we will break even. Our treasurer says it is going to be a close call.”
The tattoo was extra big this year because of the 65th anniversary of the liberation of the Netherlands. The musical event themed “Tribute to the Veterans” was a part of the national commemoration program. The organisation managed to get several top notch bands from all over the world, they managed to create a program that can only be described as phenomenal. Why less people than expected attended the tattoo George Alblas doesn’t know. “Maybe it is because the tattoo isn’t that well known. The national media didn’t pay much attention and the weather didn’t help either.” On top of that a Canadian Tour Operator did not keep its promises. “Around five thousand students would come to Voorthuizen. Eventually only one thousand came.” The VIP performance on Friday was well visited and for the Saturday evening performance over half of the tickets were sold. The afternoon performances on Friday and Saturday- especially for veterans so it would not be too late- and the Thursday evening performance were visited by few people. Still Alblas is enthusiastic “The people that did attend, the performers, the organisation and not to forget the hardworking volunteers enjoyed the shows. It was a unique feat.” . The organisation had to deal with a nasty incident. “Three Canadian students had an allergic reaction after eating a sauce based on peanuts. Volunteers took them to the hospital under police escort. There was a short period of panic but luckily it all ended well.”
As well as praise from the public and participants the organisation received a compliment from the director of the National Tattoo Rotterdam, Ad van Baal. Alblas: “He told me he had never seen a show this good.”. The committee wants to evaluate the event before the summer and they will also be looking forward to the tattoo of 2012. “We have taken a big step forward with this event and the question is how we will continue in the future.” Concludes the chairman.
The Voorthuizen Military Tattoo 2010 started this Thursday, may 6th, at the “Oranjeterrein” in Voorthuizen. Producer George Alblas looks back at a successful first night; the dress rehearsal. “It was a beautiful show and I hope it will be just as good tomorrow.” The three day tattoo is dedicated to the 65th year of liberation in the Netherlands and is a part of the National Memorial program. The theme is ‘Tribute to the Veterans’. Today there will be two performances at 14.00 & 20.00, Saturday the 8th of May the shows will be at 14.00 & 21.00. The stands can seat over six thousand people during each performance. During the VIP performance on Friday night there will be dozens of ambassadors, politicians, Canadian veterans and Canadian students. Some of the best bands from around the world will be performing. Amongst them the Band of HM Welsh Guards from London and the Band of HM Royal Marines from Scotland. There will also be bands from Canada, the USA and even Oman and Trinidad & Tobago.
MR. ALASDAIR H. HUTTON, PRESENTER OF THE VOORTHUIZEN MILITARY TATTOO
Sir Alasdair Hutton is a very well known person in Scotland and abroad. When it became known that he would be coming to the Netherlands to present the Tattoo the board felt extremely honoured.
Since 1992 he has been presenting the largest Tattoo in the world, Edinburgh, this will be his 19th year. Next to presenting the Edinburgh tattoo he has also been asked to narrate tattoos in Great Britain, Australia, the USA and New Zealand.
This Tattoo will be the first Tattoo he will present in a country where English is not the primary language. He will do this in English because, in his own words, he is not well versed in Dutch. But he has learned several words since his arrival.
To the question whether mr. Hutton has any other activities besides presenting events he indicates that he is councillor for Kelso and district, a large region is southern Scotland. Besides presenting events this takes up all of his available time.
Mr. Hutton says that the program in Voorthuizen is comparable to that in Edinburgh. “There are many bands with a great diversity in countries. It is going to be a massive spectacle with many light effects and both beautiful and colourful uniforms. The public will be surprised.”
This year the tattoo will be held in honour of the liberation of the Netherlands 65 years ago. Mr. Hutton considers it important to learn from the past despite the fact that the war was so long ago. The commemoration of the liberation contributes to this. The history and the lessons that everyone has learned should be passed on to the next generations. In the Netherlands he has seen many adolescents at the memorial services over the past few days. Many of them have become interested because of how their families have survived the war and what they had to do to stay alive. They want to learn from the past and pass it on to their children. “We cannot forget”, says mr. Hutton, “or we will make the same mistakes in the future. We have to learn from the past.”
This is not the first time that mr. Hutton is in the Netherlands. In the past he used to be a member of the European parliament and as such he visited the Netherlands as a part of a delegation. In general he enjoys the hospitality of the Dutch and enjoys seeing the effort that goes into making the tattoo a successful show.
Finally mr. Hutton would like to wish all visitors of the tattoo a wonderful performance. The show is wonderful and hopefully the weather will be as well.
Many people are working around the clock to finish the massive stands and stage for the Voorthuizen Military Tattoo 2010. The three day tattoo is themed “Tribute to the Veterans” in honour of the liberation of the Netherlands 65 years ago it is part of the national memorial program.
There will be five performances: Thursday 6th of may at 21.00, Friday 7th of may at 14.00 & 20.00 and Saturday may 8th 14.00 & 21.00. The stands can seat over six thousand spectators.
During the VIP performance on Friday night dozens of ambassadors, politicians, Canadian veterans and Canadian students will be present..
Some of the best bands from around the world will be performing. Amongst them the Band of HM Welsh Guards from London and the Band of HM Royal Marines from Scotland. There will also be bands from Canada, the USA and even Oman and Trinidad & Tobago.
For Tessa and Kito Tobitt these are exciting days. It is just a matter of days before husband and father, Robert Tobitt, of the Steelband of the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force will arrive in the Netherlands for multiple performances. Because it has been 65 years since the liberation of the Netherlands there are various liberation concerts. Robert Tobitt, Tessa’s husband, is the bandleader of the only military steelband in the world. The band is from Trinidad and Tobago, a small country in the Caribbean.
Tessa Lemaire, originally from Apeldoorn, visited the Edinburgh tattoo ten years ago and was so impressed with the Caribbean music that she wanted to purchase a CD. She bought the CD of off bandleader Robert Tobitt and fell in love. It did not take long for her to call her parents in Apeldoorn and told them that she wouldn’t be coming home but was going to move to the Caribbean Island. Her parents did not like this at first, out of parental concern, but have since reconciled with the idea.
They have gotten to know their son in law as a man they can trust with their daughter. Robert is a professional soldier and musician, he spends a lot of time travelling around the world to perform with the steel band. They have performed at the Soccer World Championship where the Trinidad and Tobago team, coached by Leo Beenhakker, also participated. Tessa visits her parents annually but for Robert it has been several years since he was last in the Netherlands. This week he will perform at the enormous tattoo in Voorthuizen and at the liberation parade in Apeldoorn. Who would like to see an extensive performance of the Trinidad and Tobago band is more than welcome to come to Voorthuizen. Besides the Trinidad band there will also be bands from Oman, France, Poland, England, Canada, the Netherlands and Scotland of course. The Voorthuizen Military Tattoo 2010 is a grand musical spectacle with hundreds of performers. Many veterans, both Dutch and foreign, will attend the tattoo themed “Tribute to the Veterans”