Edinburgh Military Tattoo '˜more popular than One Direction'
IT already draws in some of the biggest sell-out crowds at the Edinburgh Festival each summer.
But now the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo has proven it’s a hit more than 11,000 miles away - after making history as the biggest crowd puller of any show staged in New Zealand’s capital city Wellington.
More than 82,000 tickets have already been sold for the four day event, exceeding the previous record of 78,000 tickets sold when the Tattoo was in Wellington 16 years ago.
The Tattoo’s producer, Brigadier David Allfrey, told the local press in New Zealand that the show had also sold more tickets for five performances in Australia’s Etihad Stadium in Melbourne than any other act - beating boyband One Direction who had held the previous record.
Brigadier Allfrey, said: “We’ve sold more tickets in Melbourne than U2 or AC/DC or Barbara Streisand or One Direction...isn’t that just mental.
“It’s great rock’n’roll credibility isn’t it?”
More than 45,000 out-of-town visitors are expected in Wellington over the next four days for the Edinburgh Tattoo.
The long-standing Scottish show, which is expected to bring in more than £7 million to the local economy, comes complete with its own castle and 1,300 performers.
The performances include the traditional Celtic massed pipes and drums, military bands, Highland dancers as well as cultural and military performers from around the world including New Zealand.
Brigadier Allfrey said: “It was started by the Lord Provost in the late 40s in Edinburgh to inspire and entertain the people of Edinburgh after the privations of the second world war and that’s what we’re still doing today - inspiring and entertaining.”
Accommodation in Wellington and surrounding areas is said to be stretched due to the show’s popularity.
Last year organisers of the Tattoo said they were preparing to take the event on tour every two years to help raise its global profile and bring new international acts back to Edinburgh.
The world-famous event is being lined up for extensive visits to both the Persian Gulf and China for the first time within the next five years.
More than 14 million people have attended the Tattoo since it was first held at Edinburgh Castle esplanade and all 217,000 tickets for the event have been sold out for the last 17 years in a row.