The grand parade for the jubilee of Elizabeth II refines its preparations

published on Sunday, May 22, 2022 at 08:34

Amid puppets of corgis and horses, tension mounts in a large historic warehouse in Coventry, immersed in the final preparations for the grand parade that will celebrate 70 years of reign of Elizabeth II.

One of the paintings in the procession, titled ‘The Queen’s Favourites’, was entrusted to Imagineer, an outdoor events company based in this West Midlands town in central England. A “total surprise” and a “huge honor”, underlines its general manager Jane Hytch.

It is a more personal part of the 96-year-old Queen’s life that will be represented in this parade which will march through the streets of London to Buckingham Palace on June 5, as part of her jubilee celebrations. of platinum.

“We thought about what she likes”, explains Kathi Leahy, the artistic director. This is how dogs and horses became obvious.

More particularly the famous corgis of the queen, short on legs and with big ears. A pack of twenty puppets of these dogs, mounted on wheels, will take part in the show.

The first was named Susan, named after the first corgi given by her parents to Princess Elizabeth for her 18th birthday. Everyone has their own expression. One, with thick brown eyebrows, was nicknamed Groucho Marx, in reference to the American comedian.

-Lady Godiva-

And to animate them with as much life as possible, during the rehearsals, called “Corgi training camp”, each of the young people who will handle them was asked to ask themselves “what kind of dog” he has in his hand: ” mischievous?”, “young?”, “old?”, explains Kathi Leahy.

The parade reserves a special place for horses, great passion of Elizabeth II, by representing ten of the equines having counted in the life of the queen: Peggy, the Shetland pony offered to Princess Elizabeth then aged 4 by the king George V, in Burmese, the mare she rode several times during “Trooping The Colour”, a ceremony officially celebrating her birthday.

Horses are often depicted with gears, in homage to Coventry’s rich industrial past. It is also on the site where the company is located that the first British automobile was born at the very end of the 19th century.

To celebrate Coventry, a gigantic puppet representing Lady Godiva, created for the London Olympics in 2012, will participate in the parade.

It pays homage to the 11th century character who, according to legend, crossed the city naked on horseback to convince her husband Leofric of Mercia to lower taxes.

The procession, which will bring together 140 members of the troupe, will also evoke the traditional counting of swans on the Thames and with the help of boats dear to Prince Philip, will pay tribute to the Queen’s husband, who died in April 2021 at the 99 years old.

“There will be many cameras, and it’s not that often that we perform in front of members of the royal family”, underlines Jane Hytch, “there will be a lot of adrenaline, we have rehearsed and rehearsed and rehearsed , I think we’ll do a great job.”

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