From the supermarket to the charts?
Looking for young talent, the producer of Highland Saga found it on Facebook. Corona was a huge challenge for the entire entertainment industry, as nothing moved for months. In the summer of 2021, the Highland Saga team had had enough and decided to compose and produce three new songs despite the bleak outlook, but it was very difficult to find talented singers who were available for recording. They found what they were looking for on Facebook.
Eden Jones from London posted a video and it made an impression, finally they contacted the talented young singer and signed him up at short notice for test recordings in a Glasgow studio. Already during the first takes he made an impression and so it was clear that Eden would sing three new songs for Highland Saga. His father used to sing in bands and impressed his son. At the age of 5 he convinced his parents to send him to a stage school. He developed his great love for theatre and it was obvious that singing was what he liked best. As a child he played Oliver in the musical Oliver Twist and later Galileo in the We Will Rock You production. In order to finance his life, he did not become a waiter but worked in a supermarket.
Eden also excels at playing the trumpet, having joined a marching band at an early age.
Alasdair Hutton has been the voice of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo for the last 28 years. Every summer he entertains guests from all over the world on the famous esplanade of Edinburgh castle.
Has has been a journalist in Australia and Scotland as well as a narrator for the BBC.
He further spent ten years representing the south of Scotland as a member of European parliament and a further ten years as a town counsellor, of those nine acting as mayor. He served for 22 years as a voluntary paratrooper in a famous Scottish battalion and is active for charity organisations helping military veterans.
After his bandleader studies major Jason Griffiths led several music corps of the British armed forces. Among others he was chief of the band of the “Blues and Royals”, the music corps assigned to the Queen’s bodyguard regiment. His debut in Germany was at the German military tattoo at Schalke, where he led the bands, pipes and drums and at the end of the concert he was conducting 1,600 musicians! Since that appearance he has become a firm audience favourite. He makes every grand finale into something very special: with thorough unerring precision he brings all the musicians and music together - the whole becomes much greater than the sum of it’s parts - thereby creating a spectacular emotional highlight. The standing ovations and long thunderous waves of applause are convincing proof of his success.
A particular honour was bestowed on him in 2016, when he was invited to be the musical director of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. All this experience he now brings into the Highland Saga show.
Ronald A. Bromhead was born and grew up not far from Loch Lomond, and has become one of the most prominent pipers in the world. As a youth he started learning the Great Highland Bagpipes and was already taking part in world championships by the age of 15. In 1983 he became a member of the Queen’s Scots Guards and was trained as a Guards piper at the world-famous Guards Depot Piping School. In 1984 his band won the title “champion of the champions”, and from 1985 to 1993 he was the “piper on duty” to the royal family in Buckingham Palace, St. James Palace and Windsor Castle. In1989 he became the pipe sergeant of the 1st Battalion of the Scots Guards. Since 1994 he is a busy much-in-demand pipes teacher in Germany, Europe, America and Asia. A bagpipe piece he composed in 2013 celebrating the birth of prince George was gratefully and officially accepted by the Queen. He was involved as piper and composer in the production of POTW Vol. 1, and is one of the founders of “Pipers Of The World”.
Ian Melrose grew up in Ayr, Scotland. His father was a member of the Scottish Fiddle Orchestra, so traditional Scottish music has been there since childhood. Meanwhile Ian has become one of the world's leading protagonists of the acoustic guitar.
He has participated in over 130 music productions. In 1996 his path led to Clannad, whom he accompanied as lead guitarist on their '96 world tour. In addition, he played on the grammy-winning Clannad album "Landmarks" and on the 2005 album "Clannad: Live in Concert" and contributed significantly to the success of the folk-rockers.
Ian has played concerts all over the world, including many major festivals e.g. Montreal Jazz Festival (CAN), Celtic Connections (SCO), Open Strings (D), Dranouter Folk Festival (B), Tartan Week New York (USA) among many others, and he has also done international guitar tours and is in demand world-wide as a workshop-leader. He does studio work for film and television productions and continues to produce and arrange for various artists. In the "Highland Saga" Ian is responsible for arrangements and plays guitar and whistles in the band.
Corvin started learning piano at the age of seven. After his classical training he increasingly turned his attention towards rock music. He brings a certain “rock-attitude” to the “Highland Saga”, proving masterfully that bagpipe music is not only interesting for folk fans! On reading his musical vita, it becomes apparent that Corvin has a particular affinity to “hard’n’heavy” music events such as the legendary “Wacken Festival” in Germany. He plays/has played with Uli Jon Roth, Saxon and Gamma Ray, but also the famous German folk-rock band Santiano made use of his services. With them and other famous artists he toured New Zealand, Scotland, Japan and many other parts of the world. He is a very experienced studio musician and together with Ian Melrose he is the “backbone” of the POTW band.
Billy Jordan is from Glasgow. He started learning drums as a child and as a young man joined the 1st Battalion of the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders. In 2000 he became Senior Drum Major of the legendary Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, performing all over the world including a tour of New Zealand. As a teacher and coach he is constantly travelling around the globe and has the reputation of being a creator of world-champion drum majors. At the “Deutschland Tattoo – Royal Music Show“ in 2013 at Schalke he led one of the largest pipes orchestras in the world into the stadium - more than 700 pipes und drums! He is one of the founders of “Pipers of the World” for the “Highland Saga” he is responsible for the recruitment, drill and discipline of the pipe bands.
Maeve Mackinnon has one of the most beautiful singing voices in Scotland, and is particularly known for singing in Gaelic - Scotland’s native language. Resident in Glasgow, she was awarded the Scots Trad Music Award as ”best Gaelic singer of the year” in 2008. In 2015 she was the main solo singer at the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, which caught the attention of the „Highland Saga“ production team.
Maeve is a regular on radio and TV and has played all over England, Ireland, Europe, North Africa and Canada. She also has theatre productions in her credits, touring with the Scottish Opera production of “1719” and more recently with the National Theatre of Scotland production “Smiler”. She was also part of the music show “Argyll Rhapsody”. Thanks to the “Highland Saga“ one can hear her lovely voice in Germany for the first time.
The singer Ella Roberts is a native of Australia with Celtic roots. A few years ago she traced her Scottish and Irish ancestors back to the Highlands and discovered her passion for Celtic music and song. At the Australian Celtic Music Awards 2019 she received “Female Artist of the Year”, “Celtic Artist of the Year” and Song of the Year for her single "Elluria's Lament” (recorded with the platinum-award songwriter/producer team Adrian & Barbara Hannan). In the previous year she was also awarded “Female Artist of the Year” and was nominated for the “Hollywood Music in Media" Award.
Since starting her Celtic career, she has performed at the Australian Celtic Music Awards, the Australian Outlander Fan Gathering, the Gathering of the Celts, Gathering of the Clans, and the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann .
In April this year Ella made a guest appearance in the USA together with renowned American composer Tim Janis and former members of “Celtic Woman” - fiddle player Mairead Nesbitt and singer Lynn Hillary.
As a guest at royal shows, Ulrich Lautenschläger was very taken by the uniforms and British military music, but particularly inspired by the Great Highland Bagpipes. The feeling he experienced while watching the famous military „trooping the colour“ parade was such that he wanted to bring precisely thisfeeling to Germany.
The experienced event-manager started realising his dream by very successfully staging a show at the famous Loreley open-air stage, and then creating the “Deutschland Tattoo - Royal Music Show“, which he presented at the Veltins Arena at Schalke in front of 35,000 listeners in 2013 and 2014. Meanwhile this show has become very popular across the whole of Germany, and appeals to young and old alike. An important part of the success is the “Pipers of the World” formation, which Ulrich initiated in 2012. With the “Highland Saga“ he is fulfilling a further dream. “We create magic moments - that is our main aim! It’s only when I myself get goosebumps and tears in my eyes do i know that this is going to please the public.” says the impresario. His enthusiasm and love of Scottish culture has not gone unrecognised: he was awarded the title of honorary member of the MacKenzie clan by the clan chief himself. Ulrich has chosen to live in Berlin, but in the meantime London and the Scottish Highlands have become homes from home.