Founded in 1828, this troupe of elite French riders still dazzles audiences with spectacular displays of horsemanship.
The historic role of the Saumur School of Cavalry was to provide training for the officers and non-commissioned officers of the French cavalry. After World War II, however, the mounted element of the French Army had been greatly reduced and the need for a purely military riding academy had almost vanished. Fortunately, the international prestige of French horsemanship ensured the survival of the Saumur training centre in the form of a national riding school under the Ministry of Sports.
Accordingly in 1972, the National School of Équitation was constituted around the Cadre Noir, which form its core teaching staff. Today, there are about 50 horses and a team of elite riders, usually limited to 22. The members of the Cadre Noir have either civilian or military status. Some of the riders have reached the highest level of international sport, being Olympic or world champions.
The equitation on which the school is built was taught by Francois Robichon de la Gueriniere, the French riding master to King Louis XV and author of the book École de Cavalerie, which was published in 1731.
Source/photos: Wikimedia Creative Commons
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And this one, of a rider controlling multiple horses at once without the aid of any constraints whatsoever, is simply breathtaking.
Tempi changes in-hand, synchronized airs above the ground, dramatic quadrille routines and classical dressage accompanied by a live symphony orchestra–this IS dressage as art.
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