Soldiers kick-off 2014 Twilight Tattoo season
May 1, 2014
JOINT BASE MYER-HENDERSON HALL (April 30, 2014) -- The Nation's Capital Region may have been deluged under heavy rain storms, but for more than a thousand audience members at this year's opening performance of the U.S. Army Military District of Washington's (MDW) Twilight Tattoo, it was all about enjoying the military spectacle.
Twilight Tattoo is an hour-long, live-action military pageant featuring Soldiers from the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard) and the U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own." Audience members from around the world experience a glimpse into American history through performances by the U.S. Army Blues, vocalists from the U.S. Army Band Downrange, the Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, and the U.S. Army Drill Team.
"Beginning each spring and running all summer long until August, thousands of people watch our Soldiers tell the Army's story," said Jeremy Kern, MDW assistant marketing director. "Performances are usually outside, but if it rains like it did today, no worries, we just do it inside at Conmy Hall right here post."
Twilight Tattoo's opening performance was hosted by, Maj. Gen. Jeffrey S. Buchanan, MDW's commanding general. Buchanan used the first show of the season to recognize the partnership his command has with the USO of Metropolitan Washington. USO Metro board member, Bob Kaylor accepted a memento during the opening segment of the show.
Twilight Tattoo performances begin at 7 p.m. Pre-ceremony pageantry begins at 6:45 p.m. Performances from April 30 through June 25 will be located at Summerall Field at JBM-HH, Arlington, Va. Performances from July 9 through Aug. 20 will be located at Whipple Field, JBM-HH and of course if the weather is bad, it is held indoors at Conmy Hall on JBM-HH.
The history of Twilight Tattoo began more than 300 years ago as British troops were summoned from the warmth and hospitality of local pubs by a bugle and drum call to return to the barracks. The familiar tune told tavern owners "doe den tap toe," or "time to turn off the taps." The troops knew the call to mean "taps off," and minutes later they were back in their tents.
The modern-day call is known as "Tattoo" and during basic training the call signals the time to quiet down and hit the bunks. For MDW, the call serves as a tribute dedicated to the vitality of our nation and to the sacrifices of those who forged America into the land of the free and the home of the brave. It is for our forefathers and fellow Americans that MDW proudly presents Twilight Tattoo.
The MDW's Twilight Tattoo can trace its own history back to the years before World War II. At that time, on the grounds of Fort Myer in Arlington, Va., the 3rd Cavalry Regiment held military shows during the winter months. The MDW revived the traditional show in 1961 to showcase the talents of its ceremonial units.
As Twilight Tattoo grew in popularity, the Army adapted the show, its location and the time of year it was performed to fit the growing needs of the American people. Settling on performances in Washington, D.C., throughout the summer months, has allowed for thousands of audience members to experience the ceremony and pageantry of the United States Army.
The 2014 Twilight Tattoo season has performances scheduled for each Wednesday evening (except 4th of July week) until Aug. 20. Dates and times are subject to change, so please check the Twilight Schedule online at: http://twilight.mdw.army.mil/schedule.