Poster

The Barnyard Concert

A Mickey Mouse Cartoon

Release Date : April 5, 1930

Running Time : 5:58

Synopsis

Mickey, Horace, Clarabelle, and others put on a concert to the "Poet and Peasant Overture."

Characters

Mickey Mouse
Clarabelle Cow
Horace Horsecollar

Credits

Director
Walt Disney

DVD

United States
Mickey Mouse in Black and White Volume 2
Germany
Mickey Mouse in Black and White Volume 2

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 44: Musical Mickey
The Mickey Mouse Club : February 18, 1957

Technical Specification

Color Type: Black & White
Animation Type: Standard animation
Sound Mix: Mono : Cinephone
Aspect Ratio: 1.37 : 1
Negative Format: 35mm
Print Format: 35mm
Cinematographic Process: Spherical
Original Language: English

Released by Columbia Pictures, Inc.

Comments

  • Some of the animation was reused in the 1931 Mickey short, The Castaway.

From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : Can a short be derivative if the short you compare it to came after it, not before? I’m joking of course, but it’s unavoidable to watch The Barnyard Concert and not compare it to The Band Concert, Mickey’s first color short and one of his best. The Barnyard Concert pales in comparison to the latter feature, but it’s still got some good material.

This short is again basically an excuse for Mickey and the gang to play some music, but it features Mickey in his conductor role, that he will revisit later in The Band Concert and some other shorts, as well as in the parks in Mickey’s Philharmagic. It’s really quite a legacy if you think about it.

From the point Mickey takes to the soap box to conduct the band, it’s mayhem. The animals are all playing instruments this time, which shows a bit of the growth in the animators and Walt. Remember back to earlier shorts, when the band would be playing on makeshift instruments made out of spare string or even other animals? Now we are looking at fine horns or violins or bass. It’s quite the change, although subtle if you have not been watching all of these shorts in a row.

There are some repeat gags here, such as Mickey yanking on piglets’ tails to make some music, just as he did in Steamboat Willie. There are also a couple of familiar looking characters that make up part of the band. Recognize these two?

To my untrained eye, it looks like an update of the cat and dog characters from the Laugh-O-Gram Films days. It’s kind of neat to see little touches like this that harken back to the olden days of Disney cartoons.

The other thing that continues here from Just Mickey is the stellar work on Mickey’s expressions. One that stands out is his expression of disgust when a pig with a trumpet keeps interrupting the symphony.

Just looking at the expression, you can see the horror at the bad note and irritation at being interrupted. There are other instances in the short, such as his angry conducting and happy dancing. All of it makes Mickey a very memorable character, full of personality, in a way that none of the earlier Disney creations were.

The Barnyard Concert is a good short, with some fun gags, but it’s not groundbreaking or a high point of Mickey’s career. It does show some advancement though, however incremental. From the addition of real instruments, the personality of Mickey, and the detail in the drawings, you can definitely see a bright future for Mickey’s cartoons based on this short.


From Mac : Yep! Here's Mickey's first orchestra cartoon! This one's a lot of fun and it's easy to see why audiences of the day liked these things so much. Also, asides from the struggle to meet deadlines, Disney is coping really well without Iwerks and Stalling.

Well spotted on the cat and the dog. I hadn't noticed before, but you're right they do look kinda like the ones from the Laugh-O-Grams. Walt Disney directed this one so he may have had some input into their design.

One difference between this cartoon and Mickey's later appearances as a conductor is that here he's still just having fun in the barnyard. Later on he'll take this role more seriously and he'll have an audience. One similarity between this and The Band Concert would be the scene of Clarabelle flirting with a goofy dog character. Actually the cut from this scene to the next one of Mickey on the soap box is pretty abrupt. Could something have been cut from this short at some point (or has my knowledge that edits sometimes happened in reissues got me looking for things that aren't there)?


From Jerry Edwards : Mickey conducts a symphony orchestra, composed of barnyard animals. Most of the gags are repeated from previous shorts, such as Mickey pulling suckling piglets' tails to get squeals timed with the music. One fun gag is when one piglet takes off, with Mickey holding onto the piglet's tail. As they are about to hit an outhouse, the outhouse jumps up to let them pass under it - fun sight gag.
From Ryan : Again, this is another one of my "not so favorite" shorts, but it was okay. There was a reference to Steamboat Willie in this short. A scene where Mickey pulls nursing piglets in tune to music.
From Nic : This is an enjoyable cartoon with some well done gags. However, there are quite a few mistakes with the animation (various features disappearing then reappearing.)
From Bill : Standard Mickey musical with Mickey conducting his animal friends in the orchestra. Nice music but the sight gags are what I thought stood out. One where a fly on on the music is the cause of some sour notes and the outhouse jumping up to let Mickey through while being dragged by the pig. Also a reference to Steamboat Willie where Mickey is pulling the pigs tails in time to the music instead of the pigs teats. The best part of this short is the way the characters are drawn. I just love the old style and look of the classic black and white Mickeys.
From Gijs Grob : Mickey conducts a barnyard orchestra in Franz von Suppe's 'Dichter und Bauer' overture. To effect he torments some pigs, like he did to Turkey in the Straw in Steamboat Willie (1928). The Barnyard Concert is the very first concert cartoon and launches Mickey's career as a conductor, which would lead to stunning performances in The Band Concert (1935) and Symphony Hour (1942).

Referenced Comments