Damp and drizzly rehearsals for the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2014

Today had been a dark, cold and wet day in the city. As I walked back to my car late at night, I could hear, somewhere, in the distance, the wail of a piper and the deep roll of bass drums echoing within the Castle walls, the sound seeming to linger long after they had…

Getting ready for the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2014 – Part 2

I headed down to the Castle of Good Hope again this morning to see what had happened since yesterday.

The team from Gearhouse were hard at work in the arena, assembling the seating stands. The little green forklift was dashing hither and thither. 3 Electronic Workshop in Wonderboom had finished constructing the lighting towers, and were busy affixing all the lights to the tracks high above. Maintenance guys were painting the inside of the Kat archway. At the rear, a large marquee was being assembled. And the troops of the Cape Town Highlanders were drilling on the rear field behind the Castle.

Remember to go and get your tickets! Quick-quick!

The Cape Town Military Tattoo 2013 must go on – despite the rain!

The spectators who arrived for the dress rehearsal of the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2013 at the Castle of Good Hope were treated to an absolutely brilliant show. Any problems that had manifested in the run-throughs of the previous two evenings seemed to have been ironed out, and I was blown away by the quality of the performances.

And this was despite the fact that it – thankfully intermittently – drizzled and spat, poured and bucketed with rain, throughout the evening.

The second evening rehearsal for the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2013

Tonight was the second run-through of the entire show, and the levels of excitement – and stress – behind the scenes were running high. The previous night, I had run out of energy, after a long hot day on my feet, and so I had missed the second half of the show. Tonight, I was determined to stay until the end.

Another day of rehearsals for the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2013

On my way down to the Castle of Good Hope on Tuesday morning, I was suddenly struck by how wonderful it was that I was allowed behind the scenes again this year.

I still clearly remember how I sat on the seating stands at the Castle during the 2007, 2008 and 2009 Tattoos, absolutely riveted by the performances, the solemn ceremonies, the thrilling re-enactments, the colourful uniforms, the tough-looking soldiers with their weapons, the stirring music, the thunderous salvoes from the guns during the 1812 Overture, and the extraordinary venue of the historic Castle, with its backdrop of iconic Table Mountain lit up at night.

Preparations for the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2012 (Updated)

I popped down to the Castle of Good Hope in central Cape Town yesterday to take some photos of the preparations happening behind the scenes of the Cape Town Military Tattoo 2012.

As you can see, things are starting to get quite busy, in anticipation of the start of the CT Mil Tattoo, which starts next week Wednesday, 31 October and runs until Saturday, 3 November 2012.

A colourful and thrilling display of marching skills: The Western Cape Schools Drill and Marching Festival 2012 at Florida Park in Ravensmead

On Saturday morning, 20 October 2012, I made my way to the Florida Park Sports Ground in Stroebel Road, Ravensmead. I had been asked by WO2 André van Schalkwyk of the SA Army Band Cape Town to take some photographs of their performance at the Western Cape Schools Drill and Marching Festival 2012. I had attended and written about last year’s festival in Vygieskraal Stadium, Athlone, and was looking forward to what promised to be a very exciting event.

A fantastic evening’s entertainment: The Military Sunset Concert at the Castle

Update: An article I wrote about this event was published on the Reserve Force Division website. Here is the PDF document. This evening, the Military Sunset Concert 2011 was held at the Castle of Good Hope in central Cape Town, under a cloudless blue summer sky. When the big imposing gates of the Castle opened…

Cape Town Military Tattoo: The Final Muster and the Lone Piper

As soon as the smoke had cleared after the final salvo of the 1812 Overture, it was time for the Final Muster. All the participants in the evening’s performance returned to the brightly lit-up arena one final time, filling the entire front courtyard of the Castle. They were followed by the regimental flag bearers and…

Cape Town Military Tattoo 2010: The massed pipe bands

After the magnificent old Castle had been successfully defended gainst the attackers, it was time for the massed pipe bands to stride triumphantly into the arena. They appeared out of the swirling mists (courtesy of two smoke machines on either side of the Kat archway), their snare drums rattling and bass drums thumping, and with…

Cape Town Military Tattoo 2010: The First Muster

After the closing of the Castle for the night, and giving everyone a big fright with the musket- and cannon fire, all the participating bands marched onto the arena for the exciting First Muster. Centre stage was taken by the SA Army Band of Cape Town in their startling red tunics, with the Army Band…

“Come fly with us”: A delightful spring concert by the SA Air Force Association

We’ve just come back from the City Hall in central Cape Town, where we attended an uplifting spring-time concert to raise funds on behalf of the South African Air Force Association (Cape Town branch) for economically disadvantaged ex-servicemen and women of all races who live in the Cape Town area. The programme brought together the…