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450th anniversary of the Spanish Riding School

450th anniversary of the Spanish Riding School

Austria post issued a postage stamp celebrating 450th anniversary of the Spanish Riding School located in Vienna.

The Spanish Riding School in Vienna is the only institution in the world where the classic equestrian skills has been preserved and is still practised in its original form.

The headquarters is a tourist attraction in Vienna that offers public performances as well as permit public viewing of some training sessions.

The Spanish Riding School in Vienna with its famous Lipizzan ballet can be experienced live in the baroque ambiance of the Imperial Palace. Admire riding skills of the highest order – from pirouettes to caprioles.

The Lipizzaner horses themselves are one of the world’s most significant cultural assets, since this, the oldest European cultural horse breed can boast over 400 years of breeding history.

Archduke Karl II founded the Imperial Stud Farm on the karst near the village of Lipica (today in Slovenia) in 1580. Over the following centuries, the Habsburg monarchs bred a new horse breed from Spanish horses which ideally fulfilled the representative requirements at the baroque court.

Performances take place in the Winter Riding School, built between 1729–1735. The Winter Riding School is a sunlight- flooded hall, mainly white with some beige and light grey, with a portrait of Emperor Charles VI above the royal box and opposite the entrance (to which the riders always salute before they ride), which measures 55 by 18 metres and is 17 metres in height.

The Spanish Riding School also has summer stables in Heldenberg-Wetzdorf-Lower Austria. The 68 resident stallions are taken there in July and August for seven weeks, where they are kept in stalls with paddocks. The horses are not schooled during this period, but instead are hacked in the nearby forest.

The main functions of the Spanish Riding School and the Styria stud farm in Piber include the breeding of the classical Lipizzaners, the training of the stallions accord- ing to the principles of Classical Horsemanship and the training of suitable chief riders.

On the occasion of the anniversary year, a number of glittering festivities are to be held in 2015. The absolute highlight will be a gala performance on Heldenplatz in the inner city of Vienna in front of the presidential chancellery at the end of June.

450th anniversary of the Spanish Riding School

Title: 450th anniversary of the Spanish Riding School
Date of Issue: 26 June 2015
Country: Austria
Denominations: EUR 0.80

Source: Austria Post

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