Join us as we celebrate the 80th anniversary of Walt's groundbreaking symphonic masterpiece Fantasia (1940) with themed entertainment and activities, including video tours and interviews with three special guests: animation historian and Academy Award®-winning filmmaker John Canemaker, animation historian Tom Sito, and composer and music producer Fabrizio Mancinelli.
About the Speakers
John Canemaker has won an Academy Award®, an Emmy®, and a Peabody Award® for his animation and is an internationally renowned animation historian and teacher. A key figure in American independent animation, Canemaker’s work has a distinctive personal style emphasizing emotion, personality, and dynamic visual expression. His film, The Moon and the Son: An Imagined Conversation (2005), won an Oscar® for Best Animated Short and an Emmy for Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft: Graphic and Artistic Design. A 28-minute autobiographical essay about a troubled father-son relationship, The Moon and the Son marked a personal and professional breakthrough in animated storytelling.
Canemaker is also a noted author who has written nine books on animation—several of which have focused on Disney artists—as well as numerous essays, articles, and monographs for the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, among other publications. He has taught at several colleges and universities throughout the course of his career, including a guest residency at Yale, but he is most closely associated with New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where he began teaching in 1980 and was one of the founders of their animation program. Canemaker is a tenured professor who became the program’s Executive Director in 1988 and served as Acting Chair of the NYU Undergraduate Film and Television Department in 2001–02.
Tom Sito is a film historian, animation professor, and former Disney animator. He began at Walt Disney Animation Studios on Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), and his credits include The Little Mermaid (1989), The Prince and the Pauper (1990), Beauty and the Beast (1991), Aladdin (1992), The Lion King (1994), Pocahontas (1995), Fantasia/2000 (2000), and Dinosaur (2000). Outside of Disney, Sito contributed to Warner Bros’ Osmosis Jones (2001), DreamWorks’ Shrek (2001) and Fox’s Garfield. Additionally, he worked on TV shows such as Super Friends (1978), He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983), and She-Ra: Princess of Power (1985).
Sito was awarded the June Foray Award by ASIFA/Hollywood in 2011 for a lifetime of service to the animation community. He is President Emeritus of The Animation Guild Local 839 (Hollywood), currently serves as the Vice President of the International Animators Society (ASIFA/Hollywood), and is a member of the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences®. Today he teaches animation at the University of Southern California.
Sito has lectured around the world on animation, and is the author of several books, including: Drawing the Line: The Untold Story of the Animation Unions from Bosko to Bart Simpson (2006), Timing for Animation (2009), Moving Innovation: A History of Computer Animation (2013), On Animation: The Director’s Perspective (2018), and Eat, Drink, Animate: An Animator's Cookbook (2019).
Italian composer and music producer Fabrizio Mancinelli grew up within the medieval walls of L’Aquila, Italy, a lively town rich with cultural institutions. Surrounded by narrow streets lined with Baroque and Renaissance churches, Mancinelli was attracted at an early age to fine arts, the opera and eventually, film scores.
Following the passionate advice of composer Gian Carlo Menotti (whom he later assisted in the staging of his operas at the Spoleto Festival in Italy), Mancinelli enrolled in the Music Composition Program at the Conservatory Alfredo Casella, L’Aquila, Italy where he graduated in 2006 with honors in both composition and conducting. Soon after he went on to study under the guidance of BAFTA® and Academy Award®-winning composer Luis Bacalov. Pursuant to receiving a Fulbright Grant, Mancinelli studied Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television at the University of Southern California and graduated in 2009.
Since then, Mancinelli has composed music for multiple venues and media—including concerts, theater, film, television and the web—and has closely collaborated with many different directors and prestigious institutions. His music for the Italian Rai 3 TV talk show Agora aired daily from 2010–17. His other clients include The Walt Disney Studios, Feeln (Hallmark), Lionsgate, Rai, Mediaset (Taodue), Studio Bozzetto, Felix Film, NBC, Dick Clark Production Company, The Golden Globes, Wizart Animation, and Warner Bros. Animation.
He recently completed the original score and an original song for the animated feature The Snow Queen: Mirrorlands (Wizart Animation - Universal), and the original scores for the thriller Coyote Lake (Good Deed Entertainment/Cranked Up) and for the Italian comedy Scappo a Casa (Agidi/Medusa), starring the Italian renowned comedian Aldo Baglio. His original score for the musical Beauty (winner of the Alice Nella Citta's section at the 2018 Rome Film Festival) has been awarded the Best Original Score Award at the 2018 Genova Film Festival.
Current projects include Andreas Deja’s animated film Mushka, on which he is working alongside Mary Poppins (1964) songwriter and Disney Legend Richard M. Sherman. Mancinelli is a Sundance Film Music Fellow (2015), BMI Conducting Fellow (2016), voting member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (Emmys) and of the International Animated Film Society, ASIFA-Hollywood, and founder of Fab Music, Inc.—a music and sound production company based in Glendale, California.
Help Us Continue Our Digital Efforts
Since opening over 10 years ago, we have sought to make the museum a place where our guests could find animation, innovation, and inspiration and immerse themselves in the remarkable life story of Walt Disney—the man who raised animation to an art, tirelessly pursued innovation, and created a distinctly American legacy, transforming the entertainment world.
Over the course of our closure, we have increased our digital presence to stay true to our mission. Your donations ensure that we can continue opening our museum virtually to the world, and that future generations can continue to be inspired by Walt Disney’s life and legacy.