Symphony Hour

Symphony Hour
Mickey Mouse series

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Riley Thomson
Produced by Walt Disney
Voices by Billy Bletcher
Pinto Colvig
Walt Disney
John McLeish
Animation by Jack Campbell
Les Clark
Ed Love
Jim Moore
Kenneth Muse
Riley Thomson
Bernard Wolf
Studio Walt Disney Productions
Distributed by RKO Radio Pictures
Release date(s)
  • March 20, 1942 (1942-03-20)


Color process Technicolor
Running time 6 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Preceded by Mickey's Birthday Party
Followed by Mickey's Delayed Date

Symphony Hour is a 1942 American animated short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The cartoon depicts Mickey Mouse conducting a symphony orchestra sponsored by Pete. The film was directed by Riley Thomson and features music adapted from the "Light Cavalry Overture" by Franz von Suppé. The voice cast includes Walt Disney as Mickey, Billy Bletcher as Pete, and John McLeish as a radio announcer.

The film marked the last theatrical appearance of Horace Horsecollar, Clarabelle Cow, and Clara Cluck for over 40 years, finally reappearing in Mickey's Christmas Carol (1983). Symphony Hour is also the last time that Mickey appeared with either Donald Duck or Goofy in a theatrical film for the same length of time.[1][2][3]

Symphony Hour bears similarities with the 1935 film The Band Concert. Leonard Maltin called this short a "Spike Jones version of The Band Concert".[4]

The soundtrack for the "ruined" version of the Light Cavalry Overture was used in the October 22, 1956 episode of The Mickey Mouse Club.


Mickey conducts a radio orchestra who performs the Light Cavalry Overture (by Franz von Suppé). The sponsor (Pegleg Pete as Mr. Sylvester Macaroni) loves the rehearsal and agrees to have it shown in concert.

On the night of the performance, everyone is soon ready, except, of course, for Goofy, who accidentally drops all the instruments under an elevator, severely damaging, if not outright destroying, all of the instruments, thereby ruining the instruments' ability to make musical sounds. Macaroni and Mickey are completely unaware of the unfortunate mishap until the orchestra starts to "play" the damaged instruments. Throughout the outrageous concert, Mickey struggles with anxiety while Macaroni throws tantrums from inside of his private viewing room. Macaroni is reduced to tears when the concert ends, believing his reputation to be ruined. But he suddenly lightens up when he hears the thunderous applause from the audience. Clara Cluck is in the orchestra in the beginning "rehearsal" sequences but not in the actual performance at the end. Other characters appearing in this short are Donald Duck, Clarabelle Cow and Horace Horsecollar.

At one point, Donald is so fed up with the chaos caused by the damaged instruments that he packs his things and leaves. However, Mickey, who is determined to carry on come what may, points a gun at Donald's head to prevent him from leaving so he can get him back into playing again. This scene is missing in some versions of the short.


Production team

Principal animation
Effects animation


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