Review: Step back in time at Warwick Castle's Tudor-themed Midsummer Carnival - complete with jaw-dropping horse stunts, fighting knights and Elizabethan games
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Warwick Castle is well-known for it’s historically-themed events – from it’s War of the Roses Live shows to the Dragon Slayer.
For the next month, people visiting can experience The Midsummer Carnival, which takes them back in time to the Tudor times with all the pageantry of Elizabethan era.
The Carnival has been launched to mark the 450th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth I’s visit to Warwick Castle and it is certainly packed with shows and events – including an equestrian theatrical show with stunts retelling Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
From the moment you approach the East Front when you enter you are taken back in time – with members of the Landsknecht Garrison greeting you ahead of the raising of the portcullis.
Moving to the Central Courtyard you are met with music from minstrels and a medieval style stage with a jester entertaining the crowds until the bard himself – William Shakespeare – takes to the stage to introduce Queen Elizabeth I and her circle.
Then the Queen’s Parade takes visitors to the River Island for the Midsummer Night’s Dream performance – along the way the historical characters engage and entertain visitors – including the happy-go-lucky jester who will even make adults smile.
The show is certainly nothing you would expect; from the great costumes, to the enthusiasm of the actors and then the stars of the show – the talented horses and performers from the Knights of Middle England.
Jaw-dropping displays of skills from the horse riders leaves you holding your breath at times and also includes ‘a UK-first’ which sees a rider complete a breath-taking full-circle stunt under a galloping horse.
This show deserves high praise and is one of the best performances to come to Warwick Castle. The riders and horses work together to bring this Shakespearean marvel to life and there is certainly never a dull moment.
Of course when working with animals nothing is ever guaranteed, but the actors and riders recover well when things go slightly off course – and as an audience you embrace it – because let’s face it, working with animals in the performing world is both hard work and a skill not many of us can do.
The horse show is a must-see whether you are fan of Shakespeare or not.
Completing the immersive Tudor experience there is also Elizabethan games, a sword school for those wanting to test their swordsmanship and fighting knights.
There truly was never a dull moment during this event – the actors were fantastic throughout the day and it was clear the crowds loved the way they interacted with them.
Carnival aside, there were still plenty of other things to enjoy such as the Falconer’s Quest birds of prey show, the Horrible Histories Maze and the Zog Playland, Zog Live Show and Zog Trail.
If you are looking for a nice day out with something a bit different – this Midsummer Carnival is well worth your consideration.
The event runs until July 10.
For more information or tickets go to: https://www.warwick-castle.com/