via youtube.comToday I visited my friend who returned from 5 weeks in UK and Europe yesterday - what a winter to visit!
One of the highlights of her tour was visiting the Spanish Riding School in Vienna where they landed up sitting in the Royal Box.
"The Spanish Riding School in Vienna is the only institution in the world which has practiced for over 430 years and continues to cultivate classical equitation in the Renaissance tradition of the haute école.
The objective of classical equitation is to study the way the horse naturally moves and to cultivate the highest levels of haute école elegance the horse is capable of through systematic training. The result creates an unparalleled harmony between rider and horse, as only Vienna's Spanish Riding School achieves. "
I was entranced by the booklet about them - we have both always been fascinated by training of these Lippizaner stallions, attending one show together that visited here some years ago, in fact we still have the poster in our office, but this was the high point for her.
She sent me this link to an official video in which you can see the dressage, the long reins, and of course, the wonderful leaps and jumps from the famous "Airs Above the Ground".
Read more here:
See videos of the leaps: http://www.lipizzaner.com/airs.asp
or Wikipaedia: http://www.srs.at/index.php?id=265
If you are in America, they are touring there in 2010..
If you want a bit of fiction that includes these horses, try reading Mary Stewarts book - http://www.fantasticfiction.co.uk/s/mary-stewart/airs-above-ground.htm