Friday, 28 October 2016

A Horse's Musical Moments

A drunken horse goes in search of a light for his cigar on the rafter of a barn in Walter Lantz’s Musical Moments From Chopin.

MGM won an Oscar in 1947 for its concert cartoon, The Cat Concerto (defeating Musical Moments). MGM’s budgets were bigger than Lantz’s, so The Cat Concerto looks slicker and benefits from the wonderful animation of Ken Muse, who satirises the attitude of a concert pianist. By contrast, there are scenes at the opening of Musical Moments where Andy Panda is shot where you can’t see his hands play the piano, thus saving money.

But there are other scenes where Lantz and director Dick Lundy use a lot of drawings. That brings us to the aforementioned scene with the horse, who is animated on ones (a different drawing in each frame shot). Here are some of the drawings as he staggers and weaves on the rafter.

Interestingly, while The Cat Concerto and the similarly-plotted Warners cartoon Rhapsody Rabbit featured only two characters, the Lantz short has a pile of different animals that take over the action from Woody Woodpecker and Andy Panda, as well as the cute little flames that destroy everything at the end.

La Verne Harding and Les Kline are the credited animators, but Lantz generally had six or seven working on each cartoon.


  1. This is all Grim Natwick animation.

  2. I actually showed this cartoon as a "special bonus" for my Music History class in the spring (for a project on Chopin). My teacher couldn't contain herself when that horse started stumbling across the support beam (Natwick's animation is just flawlessly hilarious).