To honour Her Majesty The Queen’s remarkable service to the country for the last 70 years, Royal Windsor Horse Show (12–15 May) will host an evening theatrical arena spectacular, aptly named ‘A Gallop through History’, reflecting Her Majesty’s love of horses. Dame Helen Mirren, Damian Lewis, Omid Djalili and Tom Cruise lead an all-star cast of British and international talent for Sunday’s performance which will be broadcast live by ITV.
Royal Windsor Horse Show has always been highly favoured by Her Majesty, who has attended every edition of the Show since its inception in 1943. The Royal Family will be in attendance each evening, with Her Majesty The Queen expected to attend on Sunday 15 May.
The 90-minute phenomenon will showcase 500 horses, 1300 performers and a tri-service orchestra supported by members of the National Symphony Orchestra. The music has been specially curated by Musical Directors Debbie Wiseman OBE and Lieutenant Colonel Jason Burcham. The show takes the audience on a ‘Gallop through History’ – from Elizabeth I to Elizabeth II – two of The United Kingdom’s most outstanding monarchs.
Prior to the royal arrival and show opening, The Corps of Drums of HM Royal Marines and Academy Voices, a Welsh Choir, will welcome the audience. The show will be officially opened by The Tri-Service Guard of Honour who will be accompanied by the Household Cavalry Mounted Band and Massed Pipes and Drums.
Act I, titled ‘Queen Elizabeth I’, focuses on the gloriousness of Queen Elizabeth I, who was colloquially known as ‘Gloriana’, ‘Good Queen Bess’ and ‘The Virgin Queen’. Comedian, Omad Djalili, is the ‘Herald’, with Alan Titchmarch acting as the host of the performance from Thursday to Saturday and he will be accompanied by special guest hosts on Sunday for the ITV broadcast.. This Act will take the audience on a journey from the Spanish Armada through to Queen Elizabeth I’s poignant Tilbury Speech, as well as touching on the celebrities of the time including playwrights Williams Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe. Both The Corps of Drums of HM Royal Marines and The Pony Club will feature in this section of the show; with The Pony Club acting as The Queen’s Messengers, bringing news to the Herald on the progress of the war with the Spanish Armada.
‘The Crown, Lost and Found’, Act II, explores the era of James I, the Gunpowder Plot, the time of Oliver Cromwell, the death of Charles I and then return to the of throne of Charles II – who will be escorted by The Household Cavalry Mounted Band . Additionally, the Act will feature a segment on the Sun King (Louis XIV of France), which will include a performance from La Garde Republicaine from France. The impressive and mesmerising Household Cavalry Musical Ride will also be performing in this Act.
Act III – ‘The Crown Around the World’ – showcases the United Kingdom’s rich heritage of world exploration. The act will celebrate Great Britain’s most famous explorers including Edmund Hilary, Walter Raleigh, Francis Drake, James Cook, Captain Bligh, Scott of the Antarctic, David Livingstone and Henry Morton Stanley. ‘The Crown Around the World’ will feature exceptional international displas who will showcase their talents. These include the Secret Drum Corps [Switzerland], Kings Guard of Norway, The Royal Cavalry of Oman, Emerald Storm [Northern Ireland], The Bollywood Company [India], Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force Steel Orchestra, The Santa Siberian Huskies and Azerbaijan – Land of Fire. In addition, crowds are sure to be entertained by two comedy characters, Barrington and Billington who will be present throughout the Act.
Act IV, ‘One United Kingdom under One Crown’, celebrates the strength of the Home Nations and Commonwealth, as well as Queen Elizabeth II and her many achievements. These will be honoured by performances from the Kings Troop, Massed Pipes and Drums, Dancers of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, Emerald Storm and the Academy Voices (Welsh Choir). The act will end in the most fitting way, focusing on The Queen’s love of horses. The finale of this segment of the performance will feature a parade of State Coaches and Royal Carriages and The Queen’s Show Horses and Ponies, including Bybeck Katie and Bybeck Nightgale, the two striking greys featured in the official image celebrating Her Majesty’s 96th birthday.
Rounding off the 90-minute spectacle will be an almighty ‘Three Cheers’, along with Queen Elizabeth I addressing and thanking Queen Elizabeth II. Acting royalty, Dame Helen Mirren, will play the part of Queen Elizabeth II during Sunday’s performance.
Show Director, Simon Brooks-Ward said: “We are honoured to be hosting The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Celebration at Royal Windsor Show. With exceptional acts from around the World and world class actors and singers joining to celebrate, this is sure to be an occasion to be remembered.”
This celebratory event will be broadcast live on ITV from the private grounds of Windsor Castle on Sunday 15 May and is the first televised event to mark this historic occasion. To find out more , or to book tickets, visit www.platinumjubilee.com.