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Dressage to Music

There has been no stopping the popularity of the freestyle dressage to music test, also known as a kür, since Goodwood CDI hosted the first one at international level in 1979. There is even a separate set of individual medals up for grabs at the Olympics, World and European Championships for this crowd-pleasing form of the sport.

If you want to have a go, it is worth watching a few kürs to give you an idea of what works and doesn’t. Marks are awarded in a different way to ordinary tests. There are two categories: technical and artistic.

The freestyle test sheets tell you the compulsory movements required at the different levels and these are available through our Online shop.

To play copied music in public, you must have a music licence. You can arrange this by completing and returning both a music sub-licence agreement and a music licence record form to:

British Dressage
Meriden Business Park
Copse Drive
West Midlands

Rachel and the team will then send you stickers, which you need to put on your freestyle tapes/CDs to fulfil the licence agreement. This allows you to use any music from the record labels listed on the Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) repertoire list. Please note that you cannot mix PPL music with non PPL music ( music that does not appear on the repertoire)

It is the rider's responsibility to ensure they hold the relevant license and PPL stickers before competing. Please note, an express fee of £25 is payable if you require processing of these items in less than 48 hours. Last posting is 3.30pm for next day delivery.

BD take no responsibility for riders not having the correct stickers.

Music sub-licence agreement example

Print out pages 16 & 17 and complete sections as per the screenshots below:

Page 16

Page 17

Follow this link to access the PPL online search facility. 

 PPL Licence

There is no charge for this service if you are a BD member. If you are not a member, you can become a Club member for £35 per year. Click here to join .

You can put your own test and music together or you can pay a professional to help you. It is a good idea to take two CDs or tapes with you to shows in case there is a problem with one. Check with the organiser whether they have any requirements; at international shows, organisers like two different mediums, such as a mini disc and CD.

You need to give the organiser one CD or tape marked with your name and that of your horse. It needs to be ready to start at the right place with a note as to whether this is at the halt or at the position outside the arena where you will give a signal.

Check out our guidelines for judging dressage to music a great reference for judges and riders alike.