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Official website of the Spasskaya Tower International Military Music Festival
11 December 2019

Visiting the Vieux Grenadiers

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In 2019 Geneva is celebrating L’Escalade 417th anniversary. There is no need saying that the Company of “Vieux Grenadiers” of Geneva, good friend and participant of the Spasskaya Tower International Military Tattoo (2014, 2018), could not stay on the sidelines of such a big event.

One of the oldest patriotic societies of Switzerland hosted a reception for all their dear friends and colleagues among whom there was Mr. Sergey Smirnov, Head of the Directorate of the Spasskaya Tower Festival.

Featuring participation of 400 members of the Vieux Grenadiers society, Geneva cantone officials and honored guests, the traditional ceremony of handing over flags of new members took place.

Mr. Sergey Smirnov also had the honor to be the first to sing the Vieux Grenadiers guestbook.

For information

Company of “Vieux Grenadiers” of Geneva

Commandant of the Company — Captain Georges Abbondioli.
Chief Conductor — Sergeant-Major Christian Dominique Sallin.

The Geneva’s Grenadiers corps, being as the very best troops of the Geneva’s militia, was created in 1686. In October 1749, fourteen Grenadiers decide to meet, alongside their professional activities, with the aim to improve their comradeship. The “Circle of Grenadiers”- later being the Society of the «Vieux Grenadiers»- was born. Today it is one of the oldest patriotic societies of Geneva, with its motto: “Homeland — Family — Friendship”.

L’Escalade (from escalade, the act of scaling defensive walls) is an annual festival in Geneva, Switzerland, held each December in celebration of the defeat of an attempt to conquer the Protestant city by the Catholic Duchy of Savoy. Troops sent by Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy, attempted a surprise attack during the night of 11–12 December 1602, but according to legend, were repulsed by a cook who dumped boiling vegetable soup on the invaders before raising an alarm. The celebrations and other commemorative activities are usually held on 12 December or the closest weekend.