American flavour injected into tattoo
From little beginnings the Manawatu Tattoo has become a big circle on the calendar for hundreds of performers and fans.
Over 200 performers will be part of a musical spectacular on April 29-30, where an American theme will take over what is traditionally a Scottish show.
Director Sheran Hancock’s vision and flair will come to the fore as an elaborate set, which includes a Scottish castle, will go up in the Manfeild Stadium.
This year’s theme will explore several American ideas, such as rock ‘n roll dancing, hot rods, country music and motorcycles.
New Zealand country music icon Suzanne Prentice will be the guest performer.
Her service to music was recognised when she was made an officer of the order of the British Empire in 1995.
Also on the billing is Feilding Intermediate School, Palmerston North Boys’ High School’s stage band and OK Chorale, Manawatu and youth pipe bands, highland dancers, the Swamp City Big Band and the Rose City Rock ‘n Roll Club.
The show will have an automotive element, with classic cars, hot rods and vintage military vehicles on show.
‘‘There is so much talent in our community, especially among our younger people.
‘‘Giving them the opportunity and experience of performing in a professional setting within the arts field may inspire them to continue as they get older.
‘‘Many of our past performers have gone on to have successful careers in their chosen art forms.
‘‘All proceeds go directly back into our community and those performing will benefit by the experience and opportunity to be involved in this show.’’
The tattoo is a core activity for the Manawatu Scottish Pipe Band, of which Hancock is a long standing member.
The first tattoo in 2010 helped to raise the profile of Manawatu air training cadets. As a result, additional events were held in 2012 and 2014.
Manfeild chief executive Julie Keane said Hancock had a knack for putting on a great show.
‘‘This is intrinsically a community event - this year’s theme, Americana, might perhaps seem off the wall for a show that is based around celebration of Highland tradition, but if anyone can pull it off, Sheran and her amazing crew of volunteers can.’’
The Manawatu Tattoo returns to Manfeild on April 29 with an Americana theme.