The Big Show Before the Top Sport - The Opening Ceremony of CHIO Aachen

Saturday, April 9, 2016
Posted by


eft Uwe Brandt, Frank Kemperman and Carl Meulenbergh. On the Knabstrupper “Max”, Birte Bading as Pippi Longstocking.

(L-R) Uwe Brandt, Frank Kemperman and Carl Meulenbergh. On the Knabstrupper “Max”, Birte Bading as Pippi Longstocking. (Photo: CHIO Aachen/Pyschny)

More than 160 horses and around 500 active participants are awaited in the impressive Main Stadium July 12, 2016. Together with Frank Kemperman, Carl Meulenbergh, President of the event organisers Aachen-Laurensberger Rennverein e.V. (ALRV) and Uwe Brandt presented the programme.

Brandt is the Director of the Aachen Grenzlandtheater, he also supported the organisers with the successful Opening Ceremony for the FEI European Championships last year. What is awaiting the visitors on this Tuesday evening in July? Plenty of surprises, spectacular stunts, impressive show elements and all of this in the fascinating floodlit atmosphere of the stadium that holds a crowd of 40,000. The entire evening will centre on this year’s CHIO Aachen partner country Sweden.

“What is typical Swedish?” asked Brandt and promptly answered the question himself: ABBA of course, the Royal Family, Midsummer, and, naturally the characters out of Astrid Lindgren’s books. All of this is going to be brought to life on a very high level.

In the case of Lindgren’s Karlsson on the Roof, who as we all know can fly thanks to the propeller attached to his back, this is meant quite literally. ALRV Chairman, Frank Kemperman, stated that the participation of Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden at the Opening Ceremony is “an exceptional honour”.

She won’t be coming alone either, she is namely going to be accompanied by magnificent mounted guards and the Royal Stables. Sweden, that is also music and the most famous export is the Scandinavian “Fab Four”, ABBA. For the first time ever, the Stockholm-based ABBA Museum is going on tour and will be presented in the Swedish Village. What’s more, the original costumes will make the Opening Ceremony a glittering experience.

There won’t be much glitter when the Vikings enter the ring or when the Hanseatic Times come to life though. “Swedish culture and Swedish traditions, embedded in a colourful and spectacular show,” promised Kemperman. “The CHIO Aachen,” commented Carl Meulenbergh, “has stood for more than ‘just’ sport for many years.” And that is exactly what the audience expects, there is always a high demand for tickets for events such as the “Horse & Symphony” concert or indeed the Opening Ceremony. “The Opening Ceremony has developed into a real crowd-puller,” for which tickets are still available either online at