THE BAND CONCERT (1935)
Article 5169 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Wilfred Jackson
Featuring the voice of Clarence Nash
What it is: Mickey Mouse cartoon
Mickey Mouse attempts to conduct The William Tell Overture despite interference from an ice-cream selling duck (whose flute-playing causes to orchestra to break into “Turkey in the Straw”), a bee, and a tornado.
This was Mickey Mouse’s first color cartoon, and it’s one of the most impressive Disney shorts ever made. The use of music is exemplary (especially the melding of the two different tunes during the Donald Duck sequences) and the animation is excellent; in fact, it’s positively breathtaking during the tornado sequence in which the band continues to play while being blown in circles around the screen. I’ve tended to be a little hard on some of the Disney shorts because in terms of humor, they fall a bit short of the Warner Brothers cartoons at their best, but this one is so impressively mounted that I find it impossible not to marvel at it. The anthropomorphic animals make up the primary fantastic content, but there are also some park benches that come to life in the process. This one is highly recommended.