By special request of the Queen, the New Zealand Army Band [file photo] has performed before her and Prince Philip at Windsor Castle.
The band is in London to give marching displays at the 2016 Royal Windsor Horse Show and the Queen’s 90th Birthday Celebration Pageant.
Band Director of Music Major Graham Hickman said the Queen remembered enjoying the band’s performance at the 2012 Royal Windsor Horse Show, when the New Zealanders were in the United Kingdom for her Diamond Jubilee Pageant, but her schedule this week precluded her attending the show to see them again.
“So she requested a special private performance of our long marching display yesterday morning [Thursday 12 May]. We were escorted up to Windsor Castle and performed on the front lawn, finishing the display just metres from the Queen and Prince Phillip, who were seated under a tree.
“After the performance they both chatted informally with the band for a few minutes.
“This was an unprecedented highlight for us and the troops were elated by the experience.”
In addition to the horse show appearances the band is performing a marching display at the Pageant each evening until Sunday on The Long Walk, just west of Windsor Castle.
On Saturday and Sunday evenings, after the Pageant, the band’s Dance Band and New Orleans Band will be performing at the Global Village Cast Bar for all Pageant participants.
The band returns to New Zealand on Monday.