The South African Lipizzaners

(392)

About

In 1944 a select few Lipizzaners were rescued from war-torn Europe and brought to South Africa by Count Jankovich-Besan. The stallions at Kyalami are direct descendants of those horses and their predecessors.

In 1951, Major George Iwanowski, a Cavalry Officer, left his native Poland to come to South Africa. He met Count Jankovich-Besan at the Royal Show in Pietermaritzburg, visited his stud and was offered a Lipizzaner to train, and thus ‘Maestoso Erdem’ became the first Lipizzaner to be seen demonstrating High School Dressage movements.

It was then that the idea was born to have a team of Lipizzaner Stallions give performances similar to those of The Spanish Riding School in Vienna. So the training of the stallions began.

In 1960 Major George Iwanowski began developing his equestrian centre in Kyalami : he gradually built up a team of eight stallions, which travelled countrywide giving performances and in 1969 he built the first indoor hall in South Africa especially for their training, still our home today.

In 1971 Colonel Handler, then Chief of the Spanish Riding School, opened our first regular Sunday performance here. Major George Iwanowski was closely associated with the team from then onwards.

He eventually returned home to his native Poland and was awarded full military Honours as ‘Colonel’ on his 100th birthday in 2007. He passed away in 2008 at the age of 101. We owe him a huge debt of gratitude for establishing the Lipizzaners here in South Africa.

The South African Lipizzaners is an NPC dedicated to the advancement of this proud cultural heritage and the preservation of this most ancient breed of horse.

Over the years, the South African Lipizzaners have become an integral part of South Africa's cultural heritage and often appear on film and television, at various public performances, as well as their regular Sunday morning shows.

Reviews

4.4
from 392 reviews
"My first time at this type of event. The horse events that I have been to were all sport related. I thoroughly enjoyd this show and will be back. More than once. This is a great family outing."
- Hannes
"Enjoyed it a lot - very special evening. The horses are so beautiful and so well trained."
- Teli
"After the inside show, people should be afforded enough time to buy food and drinks, before everybody move to the outside tent where enough chairs should be provided. Only those seated stayed for the show... they missed a lot because it was an interesting presentation !"
- Mariana Minty
"Brilliant but very hot weather"
- Gen
"Such a awesome show very professional and definitely worth it."
- Paul

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