Life, Death, and Renewal

I really would not consider myself a "fan" of the Disney Fantasia movies. I remember watching the first one when I was a little girl and being bored out of my mind. I was pretty sure I was going to feel the same way about Fantasia 2000 when my husband bought it a few weeks ago. I surprised myself when I actually really enjoyed it! I ESPECIALLY loved the finale "Firebird".
I would rather not say too much about it. You really need to watch it for yourself. I really don't think I have many words that could express what this short film makes me feel.

I did a little research on the music. It was written by Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971) for a ballet called "Firebird" in 1910. The particular piece that they used in the Disney Fantasia 2000 movie was the 1919 version. Just a piece of trivia: Disney bought the rights to this music in 1940 when they made the first Fantasia. Roy Disney decided it would make the perfect finale piece and asked Gaetan Brizzi & Paul Brizzi (animators that worked on The Hunchback of Notre Dame) if they would like to work on it. You can read more about that here:


After learning this piece was written for a ballet I was very curious what the ballet could have been about. It seemed like it was MADE for that piece of animation. Here is a short plot summary of the ballet. I found it at


"Young prince Ivan finds himself in the terrible realm of the giant Kashchei, the immortal entity of pure evil, who imprisons women and transforms men into stone. Not realising the danger, Ivan rambles through the bewitched garden of Kashchei where he meets a dazzling Firebird. Struck by the Firebird’s beauty, he steals one of its feathers and runs away.
That evening he encounters 13 maidens, and falls passionately in love with one of them. The next morning, when the maidens, Kashchei’s prisoners, are compelled by magic to return to his castle, Ivan follows them.
Kashchei's monstrous servants capture him, and are about to transform him into stone. He waves the magical feather that summons the Firebird, who tells him the secret of Kashchei’s immortality: his spirit in the form of an egg that he keeps in coffer, must remain intact.
Ivan opens the coffer and breaks the egg; the monster dies, its magic is dissolved, and all those who he had captured are freed. The maiden Ivan loves, princess Tsarevna, and the prince marry."

I hope you enjoyed this film! I know I absolutely loved it!

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