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The National Stud Farm Topoľčianky at the celebrations of the 500th anniversary of establishing of the National Stud Farm Marbach in Germany
The National Stud Farm Topoľčianky at the celebrations of the 500th anniversary of establishing of the National Stud Farm Marbach in Germany

During the 4th and 5th July 2014, the oldest and the largest German State Stud Farm in Marbach celebrated its significant jubilee – 500th anniversary of its establishment. Thirteen state studs from eight European countries took part at the stunning celebrations. The National Stud Farm Topoľčianky was there…

The audience could watch cross-section of history not only of the state stud Marbach but also the history of horse breeding in whole Europe. All was happening accompanied by live music of Württemberg Orchestra.

Immediately after the opening ceremony and impressive performance of a dance group Avantgarde, the audience started its journey into the history. The story started by the first written record of the stud at Marbach in 1514 in connection with farmer uprising “Armer Konrad”. In this part, there was a performance of 16 coldblooded horses from Germany, Switzerland, France and Czech Republic in a sulky quadrille.

This period of time was followed by years 1573, 1579 and 1580. In 1573, Marbach became “Court and State Stud” and the years 1579 a 1580 were connected with establishment of the two oldest studs such as Lipica in Slovenia and Kladruby nad Labem in Czech Republic. This part of the history was expressed by art of baroque riding on lipizzaners and oldkladrubers from the above mentioned studs.

The period of 30 years’ war between 1618 and 1648 also had a great influence on horse breeding and development of the stud at Marbach. The horses found its role in army as military animals. Horses and riders from the stud farm Neustadt Dosse expressed the symbolical war atmosphere by its performance in historical uniforms using fire obstacles and a lot of smoke.

The end of 17th century and beginning of 18th century was the time of reconstruction and expansion of the stud at Marbach. In all parts of Europe the horse breeding flourished because they were needed for transport.  This period of time was expressed by performance of traditional driving. The spectators could watch different types of carriages form the studs in Switzerland, France and Marbach.

The 18th century was a period of classicism. The state studs focused on education of riders and training of horses based on classical principles. In the main arena, the lipizzaners on long reins from the National Stud Farm Topoľčianky together with young stallions under the saddle from Spanish Riding School in Vienna and coldblooded horses on long reins from Marbach expressed this period by performing quadrille on live orchestral music. It was the first time in history that horses and riders from Topoľčianky and Vienna performed together in the same choreography. It was a great honour for us and another new milestone in history of the National Stud Farm Topoľčianky.

19th century belonged to the king Wilhelm I. He established his private arabian herd in Weil. The arabians were brought directly from the Middle East. After the death of the king Wilhelm I, his herd was regarded as one of the best in Europe. However, the stud in Weil got into financial problems and therefore the princess Pauline dedicated the herd to the stud in Marbach. She fulfilled the last will of Wilhelm I about the preservation of the arabian herd. In honour of this fact, which strongly affected orientation of the stud, the spectators could see loose herd of Arabian mares in the main arena. Beautiful lightening and etheric music created an atmosphere of a dream, in which the heritage of the king Wilhelm I was honoured.

20th century was marked by two world wars. The horse market was asking for strong, undemanding but resistant horses. They were used as pack animals. In this part of the gala program we could see again the National Stud Farm Topoľčianky with the traditional horse breed – hucul. The riders demonstrated the horses as pack animals with big load saddle, dressed in traditional uniforms. In contrary, there was polish stud farm Sierakow with its konik polski which was shown as a leisure horse for children and adults.

The main part of the gala program was the 21st century – the period when Europe melted together. The passion for horses connected people across borders. Large quadrille of 32 horses, part of which also were the lipizzaners from Topoľčianky, ended the journey through out 500-year-long history.

The theatre Feuervogel and the dance group Avantgarde made the final dot after the beautiful all-evening show.

On the base of great celebrations it is obvious that Germany as a country appreciates domestic horse breeding. It is national cultural heritage for them with great value and they are very proud of it. Germany is divided into several provinces and each of them has its state stud. The province of Württemberg supported these celebrations by astronomic donation of 500 000,- € ! It is sufficient prove about positive attitude to the preservation of domestic horse breeding. Germany is aware of the wealth that is hidden in this cultural heritage of their nation.

 
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