Fantasia is a film that was released in 1940 by the Disney company. The film was Walt Disney’s second theatrical release, and the first movie ever to pair music and motion deliberatly. It was comprised of seven animated segments set to classical music that was conducted by Leopold Stokowski and performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra.
The film begins with a blue backdrop, then gradually the orchestra members begin to enter the stage and take their seats. The narrator introduces the piece and Mr. Stokowski takes the podium. They begin play Tocatta and Fugue in D minor, composed by Johannes Sebastian Bach, and the colors of the stage change along with the music. As the music rises, the camera focuses in on the conductor and the background becomes a brilliant red, and then it transitions into animation. The animations are abstract; lines and shapes that change along with the rhythm of the music. Short quick lines dance across the screen along with the staccato of the violins.
The next segment is six of the eight movements from The Nutcracker Suite by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. The animations that accompany this piece are a nature themed, showing the transition of the seasons. Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy starts the segment off with fairies awakening, bringing spring and banishing the last vestiges of
winter. The movements are all ballet like, and the flowers, fish and fairies all dance as if they were ballerinas. The Waltz of the Flowers end the segment with winter returning and the frost sprites skating across the water along with the waltz.
The third section starred Disney’s most famous character, Mickey Mouse, in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Paul Dukas. In this piece the bassoon represents the broomstick as it comes to life. The fourth segment is The Rite of Spring by Igor Stravinsky. This segment shows the creation of the universe, with volcanoes erupting in time with the orchestra. The piece ends with the extinction of the dinosaurs....