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"Night on Bald Mountain" is part of the final segment of the Disney concert feature Fantasia. It was originally seen with the rest of the film on November 23, 1940. It was inspired by and set to the music Night on Bald Mountain or Night on the Bare Mountain (Russian: Ночь на лысой горе; Noch′ na lysoy gore) by the Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881).

Plot

Modest Mussorgsky - night on bald mountain

Recording of Modest Mussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain.

The segment begins on a moonlit night, with a small village being dwarfed by the large form of Bald Mountain, on a night known as Walplurgis Night (an equivalent to our own Halloween). Up on the top of the mountain, a demonic being emerges. This being is Chernabog, the incarnation of evil. Chernabog looks down to the village below, and stretches out his arms and casts a shadow over the village, calling forth the spirits of criminals who died at the gallows, spirits of warriors in the moat and the grounds of a ruined castle, and souls of those who were not buried on sacred ground. Under Chernabog's power, the creatures of evil gather at the mountain top for their master. Under his magic, they dance furiously for his amusement. But then, the dawn comes, and the sounds of church bells send the demon back into the mountain and all the spirits and demons he summoned are forced to return from whence they came, which leads to the final part of the segment, "Ave Maria".

Trivia

  • The short is the basis for a two-dimensional level in the video game Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two.
  • Chernabog is featured as a boss in the video game Kingdom Hearts.
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