The Composers of Fantasia

Aloha my wondeful merfolk!

We all know that Fantasia is animation put to the sounds of classical music however, how many of you know about the composers behind these beautiful pieces of music? No, me neither. I know about some of these composers but a lot of them, other than their names, I didn’t know a lot about. So, for the third post of Fantasia week, I thought I’d do a little research and share with you some facts about the composers behind the musical numbers of Fantasia.


Toccata and Fugue in D Minor

This piece of written by Johann Sebastian Bach who was born March 31 1685 in Germany. His compositions are part of the Baroque period of music. It is contested as to whether Bach actually composed this piece, however old sources and ones still existing today are adamant it was Bach. on 28th July 1750, Johann Sebastian Bach dies at the age of 65. It was quoted as a stroke due to complications of eye surgery as cause of death.

Nutcracker Suite

Nutcracker Suite was composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. He was born at some point between 25th of April and 6th of May 1840 in Russia. Many of his composed pieces have been used in popular classical works. Nutcracker Suite was written as a ballet. Tchaikvsky passed away between the 25th of October and the 6th of November 1893 aged just 53.

Sorcerers Apprentice

The most famous scene of Fantasia, The Sorcerers Apprentice was based around a piece of music compoased by French composer Paul Dukas. He was born on October 1st 1865. Sorcerers Apprentice was composed in 1897. Paul Dukas died 17th May 1935 so never saw the film be made.

The Rite of Spring

Igor Stravisky, a Russian-American composer of Ukranian descent, composed this piece. He was born on the 5th of June 1882 an composed The Rite of Spring in 1913. This piece of music transformed the way in which composers who followed, thought about rhythmic structure and is the reason behind Stravinsky’s reputation as a composer who pushed the boundaries. He died on 6th of April 1971 at the age of 88 from heart failure.

The Pastoral Symphony

Symphony No.6 in F was written by Ludwig van Beethoven. He was born in December of 1770 in Cologne, Germany. In his late 20s, Beethovens hearing started to deteriorate and by the final decade of his life he was almost completely deaf. It was at this point he gave up performing publicly but some of his most notable works were written in these final years. For the last few months of his life, Beethoven was bedridden before finally passing away on 26th of March 1827 aged just 56.

Dance of the Hours

Dance of the Hours was composed by Italian composer, Amilcare Ponchielli. He was born on 31st of August 1834 near Cremona. He won a scholarship at the age of 9 to study at the Milan Conservatory, writing his first piece of music at just 10 years old. Dance of the Hours was composed as a part of La Gioconda in 1880. Ponchielli died 6 years later on 16th January 1886 of Pneumonia.

Night on Bald Mountain

Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky  was born on March 21st 1839 in Karevo, Russia, 250 miles south of St Petersburg. Once Mussorgsky turned 6 years old, he began his piano lessons, progressing so quickly he was performing works by John Field and Franz Liszt. Night on Bald Mountain was considered to be an orchestral tone poem and was composed in 1867. Modest Petrovich Mussorgsky died 16th of March 1881 having suffered an alcoholic epilepsy fit. He had just turned 42.

Ave Maria

Franz Peter Schubert, born on 31st of January 1797, composed Ave Maria in 1825. Schubert was born in Himmelpfortgrund in Vienna. Schubert battled with ill health and died in Vienna on 19th of November 1828. Official cause of death was recorded as typhoid fever. He was only 31 at the time of his death.

a mermaid be waiting for you, in mysterious fathoms below


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