Stokowski, Leopold. (1882–1977) [Disney, Walt. (1901-1966)]
Signed CA Driver's License from the Disney "Fantasia" period
California State driver's license issued to and signed by the great conductor. Signed twice on the recto, accompanied by an ink print of his right thumb, and dated July 31, 1939, valid until 1943. The document measures 4 x 5 inches [10 x 13 centimeters]. In very fine condition.
From December 1937 until March 1939, Stokowski did not conduct the Philadelphia Orchestra either in concert, or in Victor recordings. However, Stokowski was active in Hollywood during this period, which led to involvement of the Philadelphia Orchestra in the historic Walt Disney film Fantasia.
The innovative animated film is a series of eight animated musical sequences, including abstract images set to J.S. Bach's "Toccata and Fugue in D Minor"; Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker Suite" ballet; Paul Dukas's "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" with Mickey Mouse; dinosaurs & volcanoes in Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring"; Beethoven's "Pastoral Symphony"; "Dance of the Hours" by Ponchielli with delightful dancing hippos, crocodiles, ostriches & elephants; and Mussorgsky's darkly apocalyptic "Night On Bald Mountain" which morphs into "Ave Maria" in the rain. In his introduction to the published book, Disney wrote that 'In a profession that has been an unending voyage of discovery in the realms of color, sound, and motion, Fantasia represents our most exciting adventure. At last, we have found a way to use in our medium the great music of all times and the flood of new ideas which it inspires.'