Didgeridoo Orchestra at Denmark's Royal Wedding

Below is an edited account of the Didgeridoo events for the royal wedding of the Danish Crown Prince Frederik to the Australian commoner Mary Donaldson, kindly supplied by Flemming Jans (in first picture on front left with his didj from Didjshop.com) with pictures by Carsten Selvang.

Sunday, 9 May - Rehearsal

We all met to a dress-rehearsal in Copenhagen.

First we signed in and received our T-shirts supplied by the sponsor. At the rehearsal were 62 Didgeridoo players from all over Denmark, Germany and Sweden.

Next we listened to a short introduction by the organisers of the Didgeridoo orchestra at the Danish royal wedding and the day's schedule.

4 guys - Lars, Bo, Martin and Thomas - gave great solo performances.

All Didgeridoo players together almost blew Thomas off the stage when he wanted the hear everybody.

Spirits were very high and we were eager to play.

Martin, our organiser and conductor, divided us into groups according to the keys of our Didgeridoos
C - D - E - F - mix - percussion.

We started with a drone in C group then fading to D...E...

Then we played the story of the crown prince from the north who flew Downunder to experience the Olympics.

He flew and flew and landed at last in the beautiful and huge country. He saw the breathtaking nature.

He experienced the Australian animals: Kookaburra, Kangaroo, Dingo, Koala, and he saw Aboriginals throw their boomerangs.

One night he went to a party. Among all the partying people his eye caught the most beautiful girl.

His heart began to pound for this girl from the south, and soon they were in love.

One day the girl from the south took the plane to fly north and learn more about the Crown Prince and his country.

The people in the small country were very happy,...and even more thrilled when the prince told them that the girl from the south soon would be their Crown Princess.

The wedding day came and the church bells rang for the happy couple.

Everybody was happy and waiting for the prince to kiss his princess.

After the story we had 4 solos, followed by a grand final with several Kookaburra calls.

We rehearsed all day until Martin was happy and the duration of the story was down to 7min 30sec.

Thursday, 13 May - the day before the wedding

We gave a live concert and interview on Danish national TV at the Grand Central train station in Copenhagen.

Martin had to make up a short version of the story 2 x 1 min 20 sec.

Martin, Nicola and our youngest Didgeridoo player, 11 years old Frederik, were interviewed on TV.

Today we were 72 players and spirits are high.

The TV presenter and the crowd were very impressed with the performance and the huge Railway Station Hall resonated with the sound from our Didgeridoos.

Later that evening 15 Didgeridoo players went down to the main pedestrian area in Copenhagen and gave a 45 minutes show.

We got about Euro 50 in the hat, so next stop was Cafe Krasnapolski to get some musss (Swedish slang for beer).

Friday, 14 May - the day of the Royal Wedding

We all met at the central square in Copenhagen, where the main activities and the stage were. On this big day we were 80 Didgeridoo players - only half of the 160 people that signed up but still a record on Danish soil. Many wanted to play but had other commitments - work etc...

We had two Aboriginal guests, Trevor and Greg from Perth, joining us on stage in full ceremonial paint giving a solo performance.

First, Martin was interviewed again live on national TV.

Then, it was time for us to play in front of about 20,000 people in the town square. First the drone going up through the different keys, then the story (as told above), 6 solos and the Kookaburra ending.

And we were a huge success, the audience was cheering and everybody was happy.

These were a few intensive days with high spirits, lots of sharing and learning, thank you every one for participating.

Kind Regards,

Flemming Jans