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Night on Bald Mountain/Ave Maria
Night on bald mountain ave maria
Pages from the Fantasia Press Booklet
Direction Wilfred Jackson
Story Development Cambell Grant
Arthur Heinemann
Phil Dike
Art Direction Kay Nielsen
Terrel Stapp
Charles Payzant
Thor Putnam
Background Paintings Merle Cox
Ray Lockrem
Robert Storms
W. Richard Anthony
Animation Supervision Vladimir Tytla
Animation John MacManus
William N. Shull
Don Patterson
Robert W. Carlson, Jr.
Lester Novros
Don Patterson
Special Animation Effects Joshua Meador
Miles E. Pike
John F. Reed
Daniel MacManus
Special Camera Effects Gail Papineau
Leonard Pickley
Running time 14:04
Night on Bald Mountain/Ave Maria is the final segment of Fantasia, following the music of the same name by Modest Moussorgsky and Franz Schubert. Deems Taylor introduces it as the conflict between the profane (represented by Night on Bald Mountain) and the sacred (represented by Ave Maria).

At Walpurgis Night (the Witches' Sabbath), Chernabog, god of evil, emerges from the peak of Bald Mountain (in reality Mount Triglaf, near Kiev in southern Russia) to summon all of his minions, including ghosts, demons, hags and harpies, who dance furiously as he throws them into the mountain’s fiery pit. Chernabog is driven away by the light of the dawn, and a procession of figures walks up a hill to witness a sunrise. It is perhaps the most famous sequences in Fantasia, if not, second to The Sorcerer's Apprentice. The sequence showcases the animation of Vadimir Tytla and the style of Kay Nielsen, as well as the longest shot ever produced in the multi-plane camera (in the procession).

Plot

The sequence takes place in a mountainous area, in which a village is overlooked by Bald Mountain. The peak of Bald Mountain is revealed to be Chernabog's wings, which he spreads out as he looks at the village down below. Stretching out his arms, Chernabog casts a dark shadow over the village and summons ghosts, including the spirits of hanged criminals (who pass through the noose a second time as they rise from their graves), fallen warriors in the moat and grounds of a ruined castle and the souls of all who are not buried in sacred ground.

Bald mountain ghouls

Chernabog's minions dancing

The ghosts join together to become a single mass, swirling around Chernabog, who laughs and summons fire and demons. As the demons emerge and gather below their master, he grabs a number of them and disdainfully throws them into the fires of Bald Mountain, while his other minions dance on. He then uses flames to create images: first, the flames resemble elegant dancers; then, at his pleasure, they transform into dancing barnyard animals. Chernabog then transforms them into blue demons, who dance before him, causing him to grin maliciously. As the dancing continues, it becomes more frantic and chaotic; Harpies fly above the demons, occasionally grabbing them and throwing them into the inferno. The celebration culminates in a blinding flash of fire from the inferno. Chernabog, ready to continue, eagerly leers over his minions, but is interrupted by the sound of bells, which herald the coming of the dawn. Though he initially ignores the sound, the light of the sun forces him and his minions to retreat; as the ghosts return to their resting places and the demons hide in the mountain, Chernabog raises his arms one final time and closes his wings, protecting himself from the sunlight and becoming the peak of the mountain once more.

Sunrise

The sunrise

A long line of figures (possibly nuns), each bearing a source of golden light, gradually comes into view in the land in front of the village. The silhouettes proceed up a shallow-sloping hill, among natural forms that resemble the architecture of a cathedral (trees are tall and completely vertical, resembling columns, and branches cross together to form gothic arches), the predawn sky filled with colour by the coming sunrise. The camera continues ahead of these figures and reaches a serene horizon, where the sun slowly rises to a crescendo.

Production

Kay nielsen chernabog

An inspirational sketch by Kay Nielsen establishing the look and style of Night on Bald Mountain

The idea for Night on Bald Mountain's Devil was conceived by German artist Heinrich Kley (who, though he did not work at the Disney studio, inspired many of the Disney artists, and whose drawings were collected by Walt Disney), who once sketched a pen and ink drawing of a gigantic demon forcing workers out of a factory by blocking the chimney. Albert Hurter, inspired by this drawing and others like it by Kley, drew various sketches of a huge, winged devil tossing handfuls of souls into a volcano. Hurter's sketches also included studies of Chernabog's hands as his flailing minions attempt to clamber onto his fingers for safety; this imagery is used in a shot in the final film. After Hurter's initial sketches, Kay Nielsen established the final appearance of Chernabog and his world in a series of detailed pastel illustrations, as well as a model sheet for the character.[1] Chernabog was then created as a real model, to be used as reference by Tytla during animation.[2]


Other Appearances

Kingdom Hearts

"A Night on the Bare Mountain"
A Night on the Bare Mountain KH

"A Night on the Bare Mountain" serves as the boss theme for Chernabog in the End of the World.

Trivia

  • This segment has an equivalent in Fantasia 2000, the Firebird Suite, as they both feature a demonic being reeking chaos, and good ultimately overcoming their doings.
  • This theme song was briefly heard in the anime Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple as Siegfried sings along to it and chases Niijima.
  • The song "Night on Bald Mountain" was used in the PS Vita edition of LittleBigPlanet. In addition, some Disney characters like the Incredibles became DLC costumes for LittleBigPlanet.

References

  1. John Canemaker, "Before the Animation Begins: The Life and Times of Disney inspirational Sketch Artists"
  2. John Culhane, "Walt Disney's Fantasia"


Fantasia
Fantasia2MovieCollectionDVD
Media: Fantasia | Fantasia 2000 | Who Framed Roger Rabbit | Video game | House of Mouse | Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance | Disney Infinity | Fantasia: Music Evolved

Shorts: Toccata and Fugue in D Minor | Nutcracker Suite | The Sorcerer's Apprentice | The Rite of Spring | The Pastoral Symphony | Dance of the Hours | Night on Bald Mountain/Ave Maria | Symphony No. 5 | Pines of Rome | Rhapsody in Blue | Piano Concerto No. 2 | The Carnival of the Animals | Pomp and Circumstance | The Firebird Suite

Shorts from the Unfinished Third Fantasia: Destino | The Little Matchgirl

Characters: Mickey Mouse | Donald Duck | Daisy Duck | Yen Sid | Chernabog | Chernabog's minions | Magic Brooms | Tyrannosaurus Rex | Stegosaurus | Triceratops | Pteranodon | Gryposaurus | Corythosaurus | Apatosaurus | Diplodocus | Ornithomimus | Ceratosaurus | Psittacosaurus | Hyperodapedon | Edmontosaurus | Dimorphodon | Parasaurolophus | Dimetrodon | Tylosaurus | Plateosaurus | Compsognathus | Archaeopteryx | Bacchus | Jacchus | Centaurs | Centaurettes | Melinda | Brudus | Iris | Morpheus | Diana | Zeus | Apollo | Vulcan | Madame Upanova and her ostriches | Hyacinth Hippo and her hippos | Elephanchine and her elephants | Ben Ali Gator and his alligators | Colorful Triangles | Black Triangles | Humpback Whales | Duke | Rachel | Flying John | Killjoy Margaret | Jobless Joe | Tin Soldier | Ballerina | Jack-in-the-Box | Yo Yo Flamingo | Snooty Flamingos | Noah | Spring Sprite | The Elk | Firebird | Mother Pegasus | Sunflower | Boreas | Artemis | Nyx

Interstitial Hosts: Steve Martin | Bette Midler | James Earl Jones | Angela Lansbury

Locations: Yen Sid's Tower | Bald Mountain | New York City | Prehistory

Disney Parks: Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf



 
Kingdom Hearts series
Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix 2 (Art)
Games: Kingdom Hearts + Final Mix | Chain of Memories | Re:Chain of Memories | Kingdom Hearts II + Final Mix | 358/2 Days | Birth by Sleep + Final Mix | coded | Re:coded | Dream Drop Distance | HD I.5 ReMIX | χ [chi] | HD II.5 ReMIX | Kingdom Hearts III

Incorporated Films and shorts: Alice in Wonderland | Aladdin/The Return of Jafar | Beauty and the Beast | Cinderella | Fantasia | Hercules | The Hunchback of Notre Dame | Lilo & Stitch | The Lion King | The Little Mermaid | Mickey, Donald and Goofy: The Three Musketeers | Mulan | The Nightmare Before Christmas | Peter Pan | Pinocchio | Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl | Sleeping Beauty | Steamboat Willie | Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs | Tarzan | Tron/Tron: Legacy | The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

Main Characters: Sora | Riku | Kairi | King Mickey | Donald Duck | Goofy | Roxas | Terra | Ventus | Aqua

Villains: Master Xehanort | Ansem | Xemnas | Maleficent/Dragon Maleficent | Pete | Organization XIII | Vanitas | Xigbar/Braig | Xaldin | Vexen | Lexaeus | Zexion | Saïx/Isa | Demyx | Luxord | Marluxia | Larxene | Terra-Xehanort | Young Xehanort | Xehanort's Guardian

Other Characters: Jiminy Cricket | Naminé | Ansem the Wise/DiZ | Yen Sid | Xion | Axel/Lea | Master Eraqus | Dilan | Even | Aeleus | Ienzo | Lingering Will | Data Sora | Data Riku | Data Naminé | Data Roxas | Hayner | Pence | Olette | Riku-Ansem | Kairi's Grandma | Riku Replica | Anti-Saïx | Anti-Sora | Anti-Riku | Sora-Heartless | Jiminy's Journal

Original Monsters: Heartless | Nobodies | Unversed | Dream Eater

Disney Characters and Villains: Queen Minnie | Daisy Duck | Pluto | Tarzan | Winnie the Pooh | Aladdin | Genie | Tron | Magic Brooms | Peter Pan | Quasimodo | | Merlin | Tigger | Eeyore | Rabbit | Ariel | Mulan | Mushu | Jack Sparrow | Chernabog | Simba | Timon | Pumbaa | Nala | King Triton | Jafar/Genie Jafar | Alice | Cheshire Cat | Jack Skellington | Esmeralda | Phoebus | Beagle Boys | Scrooge McDuck | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Master Control Program | Sark | CLU | Rinzler | Beast | Stitch | Hercules | Tick-Tock the Crocodile | Snow White | Wendy (More coming soon)

Square Enix Characters: Leon | Cloud | Neku Sakuraba | Shiki | Others

Plot Elements: Universe of Kingdom Hearts | Kingdom Hearts | Heart | Keyblade War | Dark Seeker Saga | More

Game Elements: Gameplay in Kingdom Hearts | Magic

Objects: Sea-salt ice cream | Wayfinder | Door to Darkness | Keyblade | X-blade | Mickey's Letters | Thalassa Shell | Kingdom Hearts Encoder | Keychain | Gummi Blocks | Bug Blox | Black coat| | Keyblade Armor

Locations: Land of Departure | Disney Castle | Disney Town | Timeless River | Datascape | Radiant Garden/Hollow Bastion | Keyblade Graveyard | Destiny Islands | Traverse Town | Dive to the Heart | End of the World | Realm of Darkness | Castle Oblivion | Twilight Town | The World That Never Was | Castle That Never Was | Halloween Town | Neverland | Wonderland

Organizations/Groups: Organization XIII | Princesses of Heart | Disney Villains Council

Music: Dearly Beloved | Simple and Clean | Sanctuary | Mickey Mouse Club March | Swim This Way | Part of Your World | Under the Sea | Ursula's Revenge | A New Day is Dawning | Destati | Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo | He's a Pirate | Beauty and the Beast | This is Halloween | It's a Small World | Night on Bald Mountain | Winnie the Pooh | The Sorcerer's Apprentice | The Pastoral Symphony

Soundtracks: Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Final Mix - Additional Tracks | Kingdom Hearts II Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack Complete | Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep & 358/2 Days Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance Original Soundtrack

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