Appearances that the piano solo Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 has made in cartoons
Among the piano solos that we at the piano shop Middlesex company Little & Lampert Pianos particularly enjoy listening to is the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2, which was the second of a set of 19 Hungarian Rhapsodies made by one of history's most famous pianists, Franz Liszt. It has greatly endured in fame and popularity over the 20th century, largely thanks to its widespread use in popular culture during that century, particularly in cartoons. Below, we mention some notable appearances that the piano solo has made in cartoons and that have helped to sustain its fame.
The Mouse is in The Opry House
The solo appeared in one of the earliest animated features starring Mickey Mouse, the now legendary Disney mascot. This feature was a short that was titled 'The Opry House' and first released on March 28, 1929. In the short, Mickey owns what the short's title apparently refers to as an opera house and performs a vaudeville show alone. The piano solo is played by Mickey for the short's finale.
Duck! Duck! Yes, two ducks - in Who Framed Roger Rabbit
The recent death of Bob Hoskins has reminded many of us of one of his most famous and greatest films, the 1988 Robert Zemeckis-directed feature Who Framed Roger Rabbit. This film pays tribute to many of the greats of 20th century cartoons, including Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse and far too many others to list here. It pays particular tribute to the common historical use of the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 in cartoons with a memorable scene where Daffy Duck and Donald Duck compete by playing different pianos at the same time. Themes from the Rhapsody also appear in the score of the Disneyland dark ride attraction Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin.
The Animaniacs go out with a good tune
Remember Animaniacs? Yes, we do mean that animated series that was made by Steven Spielberg and Warner Bros. in the 1990s. The most recent Animaniacs production is a direct-to-video animated musical film called Wacko's Wish. This was released in 1999 and featured the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 as the tune of The Wishing Star, which the Warners sing about in the film. Considering that this production was released fifteen years ago, it seems very likely that no other Animaniacs productions will be made in future. If this is indeed the case, this franchise certainly seems to have ended with a great tune.