Founder of music for dressage to give demo in Slapton

Doyenne of music for dressage Gaynor Colbourn is coming to Bury Park Equestrian Village in Slapton
Doyenne of music for dressage Gaynor Colbourn is coming to Bury Park Equestrian Village in Slapton

Top composer and Grand Prix dressage rider Gaynor Colbourn is renowned as The Music for Dressage Wizard – and she’s going to be giving a demonstration at Bury Farm Equestrian Village in Slapton on Friday, May 19.

She’s one of the founders of the sport and will be joined by international riders Joe Bright and Julia Kirby at an event that promises to be an evening of top class entertainment. Gaynor will play much of the music live in the arena.

The keen equestrian – who composed the theme tune for the Ronnie Corbett sitcom Sorry – trained as a classical pianist and has worked as a session musician within the TV and recording worlds.

She and fellow dressage expert Jennie Loriston-Clarke conceived the idea of dressage to music in 1980 at the home of Wellington Riding owners John and Nereide Gordon.

Gaynor recalled: “We were watching the Goodwood Grand Prix Special on television with the sound turned off. I started playing their grand piano to accompany the horses, reminiscent of the music at silent movies.

“Our first joint venture was at Wellington Riding with Jennie on the mighty Dutch Courage. Nereide did a beautiful pas de deux on Wellington Oliver, with her chief instructor Jeremy Michaels on a lovely chestnut.

“I produced all the music and developed my trademark style of playing keyboards live in the arena, matching every move, tempo, change and yes – even the odd shy and buck.”

Her bespoke music for dressage competition has helped more than 9,600 riders to victory. This year her success rate has been an astonishing 98 per cent.

Gaynor always approaches commissions in a way which makes them an exciting experience for everyone. Audiences love the drama and emotion and judges can see that the music is in harmony with horse and rider.
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