Occasionally, we used to do them as part of our group lessons when i was a child. As riders and class times changed every week, the instructor stood in the gallery and shouted the movements. We weren't as polished as those above!:smile: I think some went on to do it as a team. It was good fun.
I used it later when i taught able-bodied and therapy classes.
When I was running a riding school a woman wanted to put on a musical ride in the winter, which she did. Several of the riders were 'my' kids.
It was fun.
Come spring she wanted to do another for the Pony Club Show. As the practises were on a Saturday I could t transport anyone to where they were practising so that was out for them.
They did the ride at the show and it was good.
A friend of mine and on the board of the County Show Committee called and asked if they put on a MR competition would I enter. I said we would and so we entered. There were just three teams and we came second to the PC who had been practising for months (we only had four weeks notice) They deserved to win.
The following year, 1977, the silver anniversary of Queen Elizabeth becoming queen, I was determined to beat the Pony Club. Again they put their ride on at the PC show and they were celebrating the Siver Jubilee. It was good. They had a rider, dressed as Queen Victoria, riding side saddle but being led by her mother and several unmounted children dancing around.
That gave me an idea. I had sixteen riders, I managed to beg and borrow eight sidesaddles.
I had a horse and trap with my two youngest pupils, four and five, dressed as a king and Queen in the phaeton, other of my pupils were on foot and eight riders sidesaddle and eight astride.
What I had learned from the previous rides was it was easier to set the ride to the music rather than music to the ride. We practised hard. The girls had black aprons (the sidesaddle skirts) made from old blackout material stolen from a high security prison by one of the rider's parents who worked there. The girls all had black bowler hats. Their parents bought them new white school shirts which I decorated with ruffles made from net curtain material. They had more net tied around their hats with long ribbons down their backs.
The boys all had top hats and long black tails (borrowed from several undertakers). Sheer fluke it worked out that we had all chestnuts and greys in the ride.
The music was catchy, people at the side of the ring were moving in time with it. They performed beautifully. The cheers and applause when they finished was surprising. It was all done at the trot as horse size varied from 13 - 16.1 hands. The movements were complex, lots of inter weaving and coming into line one behind the other almost nose to tail.
They had four judges. Two were ex ball room dance champions, the other was an elderly lady and the forth a younger woman.
When it was announced that the Pony Club had won there's was silence apart from the PC riders cheering. Hardly any applause from the onlookers.
We came second (there were five teams.) The PC went first and we went third.
I was so disappointed at first and then enraged. I have never been a bad looser in my life but I was furious at the children had been robbed.
They went in for the presentation and the Pny Club riders and foot troupe all got a rosette each. We were given just one ribbons, albeit a nice commemorative one but only the one. The odd thing was that they had exactly the right amount of ribbons for the PC.
I went straight to the commentator (my friend who had organised the MRs and asked him what the heck was going on. He was as shocked as me. I then went to find the judges, all having tea and cake in the judges tent. Without preamble I demanded to know how itmwas judges. Straight away one woman shoved an envelope in front of me with marks written on it. Top was 89, second was 56, third was 94 and the other two in lower figures.
I pointed out that we had ridden third and was told she has written the PC score to low on the paper and ours was written on the top.
I stared her straight in the eye and if looks could kill she would have died on the spot. I just stated (in my teaching voice (not shouting) so all could hear both inside and outside he tent,) that I knew my children had been robbed.
I refused to do another ride at the County Show so it was stopped.
The two ball room judges came over and told me that three of them had all thought our ride was way above the others but the other woman who was the only one who knew about horses, pulled us apart on technicalities.
We,were,still ahead on the scoring but she changed it around writing it out for the commentator. Turns out she was the sister in law of the PC trainer.
I was so proud of those children, they performed to perfection. The little queen, Claudia, asked if they had done something wrong, that nearly broke my heart.
A couple of weeks later the show committee offered to reverse the results but I said it was way to late for that.
I used to LOVE doing musical freestyles with my old mare Dolly at Pony Club rallies. I have one video, from an open house event my club did (about 12 years ago or so??). It's not perfect - if I remember correctly I kind of winged it that night! But it was so much fun, especially since Dolly was such a nice mover (inspite of me). I just love her walk at 3:10. Dolly was such a dainty mover, I wish I could have done her justice. (pleeease no critiques, this is so old and The Mare is no longer with us so not much can be done.)
I'd love to do one with Nav one of these days, even if just for fun at home. I typically listen to music while riding and I think Nav likes it. I've also incorporated using music in lessons, and my student really seemed to enjoy that. Would love to try one with others someday.
I love doing freestyles and Pas de Deux at the dressage shows, one time I won high score for the day with my freestyle. It takes a lot of work and time to find the right music and put it all together but very rewarding in the end.
I am showing a new horse this year and didn't have time to work on a freestyle for him but hope to next year.
One ride I remember I was showing a horse and using the same music that I did for another horse but because this horse had a lead he was not great on I decided to ride the pattern in a mirror image so avoiding as much cantering on the poor lead. Going in I said to self don't forget to do it the opposite way and as the previous rider came out she said it was very muddy at A and C so I decided to start my canters at S and P to avoid the mud as much as possible, now two things to remember and as we were doing the last canter I could tell we were ahead of the music so I decided to cut across the center with a simple change at X to kill a little time as I did not want to end my ride sitting in the Judge's lap.
Fortunately it all came together and no one knew all the changes I made and we did win the class.
I was in a mounted Air Force drill team years ago. We didn't ride to music, but we did have to be aware of each other and the timing as we transitioned through our formations. Doing those transitions while carrying flags (U.S., State and AF) while riding in a parade with a fire engine behind you is . . . Challenging. 😊 it was also a lot of fun.
Riding in uniform was also challenging. They aren't designed for equestrian activities.