Oct 02

The Magic of Disney at the CPO – Thanksgiving Weekend!

by CalgaryPhilharmonicOrchestra · 0 comments

No matter how old you are, you’ve likely heard of or seen Disney’s Fantasia (or perhaps the sequel – Fantasia 2000). This Thanksgiving weekend on October 10 and 11, the CPO will perform music from both films, while authentic cartoon highlights play on a screen above. Conducting these concerts will be a thrill for our Music Director Roberto Minczuk, who has wanted the Orchestra to perform this music for years. As he puts it, Fantasia “promotes music and orchestra in such a brilliant way.”

Start your preparation for the concerts with these fun facts about the films:

The Firebird and Mount Saint Helens: In Fantasia 2000, The Firebird sequence is meant to represent the eruption of the Mount Saint Helens volcano in 1980.

Bassoon in the limelight: If you’ve seen Fantasia, you’ll know these notes by heart. Fantasia is responsible for making the bassoon solo from The Sorcerer’s Apprentice the most recognizable passage for the instrument in the orchestral repertoire. Click here to have a listen (you may have to skip ahead to 1:01 in the video).

The Sorcerer and Walt Disney: The name of the sorcerer in Fantasia, “Yen Sid,” is actually “Disney” spelled backwards. The animators modeled elements of the Sorcerer in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice on their boss, Walt Disney – particularly the raised eyebrow.

CPO Musician Taught by Fantasia Musician: Our Assistant Principal bassoonist Michael Hope studied music in Philadelphia and one of his instructors was the great Sol Schoenbach, the bassoonist who played the exposed opening bassoon solo in Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring for Fantasia – arranged by Leopold Stokowski. “I remember Mr. Schoenbach telling me in a lesson about how Stokowski made him play the excerpt 45 times in the recording session until he was satisfied that it was just right,” Michael explains. “He also made him change reeds four or five times as well, in order to have the right sound.”


Check out this great family friendly event in Calgary from the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra!



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