St Andrew’s Tattoo lights up RGC

December 2, 2022

Over 100 pipers, drummers and dancers performed in a St Andrew’s Tattoo on November 26 in front of the historic Robert Gordon’s College Auld Hoose, floodlit in blue for the occasion.

This event, postponed from the previous week due to adverse weather, was attended by 200 parents and friends of the College. 

The Tattoo offered an opportunity for Pipers, Drummers and Highland Dancers of all levels of ability from S6 down to Primary 5 to demonstrate their musical and dancing skills in a mass public environment. The varied programme featured the College’s Development, Intermediate, Novice A and Novice B Pipe Bands and Highland Dancers.

Pipe Major Jason Sumner said: “Learning an instrument and dance takes patience, perseverance and dedicated practice and being a member of the Pipe Band requires teamwork, self-confidence and camaraderie. These are some of the core values that we encourage; helping our members to raise personal and shared attainment, and to reach their full potential here at the school and going forward in later life.”

CCF Contingent Commander Wg Cdr Daniel Montgomery added: “This tremendous evening has become a major annual occasion in the life of the school and is a great tribute to the tireless efforts of the extended teams of instructors in Piping, Drumming and Dance. Numbers involved are quite staggering. Retention of numbers and progress confirm the value of the perseverance of staff and all performers who gave, or received, virtual weekly lessons throughout periods of COVID lockdown to ensure that momentum was not lost.”

The term “tattoo” derives from a 17th-century Dutch phrase doe den tap toe (“turn off the tap”) a signal to tavern owners each night, played by a regiment’s Corps of Drums, to turn off the taps of their ale kegs so that the soldiers would retire to their lodgings at a reasonable hour. With the establishment of modern barracks and full military bands later in the 18th century, the term “tattoo” was used to describe the last duty call of the day, as well as a ceremonial form of evening entertainment performed by military musicians.

● To learn more about Robert Gordon’s College, click HERE.