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The Spanish Riding School of Vienna
Spanish Riding School Insights by John D'Addamio  

Riding School

Adorable TV
for the SRS


The True Miracle of the White Stallions 1939 - 1955
A New Series by John D'Addamio

The True Miracle of the White Stallions 1939 - 1955 by John D'Addamio
Introduction: The Miracle of the White Stallions, a popular Disney movie, depicts the evacuation of the Spanish Riding School from Vienna in 1945 and the recovery of the mares.  The movie is great fun and follows the broad outline of true events.  However, the Disney film is not a documentary ....and I think the real story is even more interesting ..... Read More ...
Staffing the Spanish Riding School 1939 - 1945 ...
The SRS Evacuates Vienna
Using orders to preserve "certain art treasures", the Stallions are finally allowed to leave Vienna ..
Sankt Martin When the staff and the last 15 stallions of the Spanish Riding School arrived in St. Martin, their troubles were not over 
The Castle John and his wife find the castle

A New Variety of Rose is Lipizzaner Rose
Spanish Riding School Insights Spanish Riding School Insights by John D'Addamio  
John saw his first performance of the 400 year old Spanish Riding School in 1982 and often spent weeks watching the training sessions and performances at Vienna, the most recent three week trip last fall.  John shares these rare Spanish Riding School Insight articles.    

1. What's the Spanish Riding School Doing in Austria?
By John D'Addamio
2. 90 Years of Change By John D'Addamio
3. Privatization of the School and Consequent Changes By John D'Addamio
4. Training of the Riders at the Spanish Riding School 
By John D'Addamio The record time from eleve (trainee) to Chief Rider is 20 years.  One trainee is accepted each year.  80% of the trainees don't complete their training.  
5. The Horses of the Spanish Riding School  Conversano, Pluto, Favory, Siglavy, Neopolitano and Maestoso are the six foundation stallions. Lipizzan horses are named for their sire and their dam.  
6. How Are the Stallions Chosen for the School?
7. Morning Training and the Stages of Training
Morning training sessions can be viewed in Vienna.  They do not rush the training.   
8. High School Movements - Piaffe & Passage
Classical piaffe with lowered haunches and in place is rarely seen in today's competition arena.  The Spanish stallion, Invasor, is an exception, showing classical piaffe and passage and often earning the high marks for both movements. 

9. Airs Above the Ground
Stallions usually master only one air above the ground:  levade, capriole or courbette.  Shown here is the levade. 
10. The Vienna Performance: Young Stallions and All Steps and Movements  The young stallions are ridden calm, forward, straight and are shown first followed by the high school trained stallions performing all steps and movements to show the beginning and final stages of training.  

11. Vienna Performances:  Pas de Deux and Work in Hand
Absolute perfection

11A. Vienna Performance:  On the Long Rein and Airs Above the Ground

12. The Vienna Performance: The Quadrille Introduction
Can you imagine 8 horses performing in unison a 20 minute grand prix freestyle?  
13. The Vienna Performance:  The Quadrille - Entry and Trot Work
Walk Entry and Salute is followed by intricate in unison trot work including half pass, shoulder-in, passade and volte.
14. The Vienna Performance:  The Quadrille - Canter Work The entire Quadrille takes 20 minutes. Now that you have read how riders in different number positions make different turns or do mirror image movements of their colleague in front of them or behind them, perhaps you can begin to appreciate the complexity of the Quadrille as well as its beauty
15. Variations on The Vienna Performance On special occasions there is the short program and the variations used for galas and tours.  The solo performance with only the curb reins held in one hand and the whip held vertically.  The rider does not need the reins or the whip. It is the ultimate display of the rider's skill and lightness. 
First female eleves (rider trainees) passed 1st month test
October 15, 2008

First female eleves (rider trainees) accepted at the Spanish Riding School September 4, 2008
History is Made!

Youtube TV Commercial Adorable TV Commercial for the SRS
2008 US Clinics

Riders from the Spanish Riding School give up part of their vacation time in January and July to give clinics across the US.  A rare opportunity for auditors and riders.  
2008 US Tour Cancelled

The 2008 US tour planned for the West Coast in November and December, has been cancelled.  


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