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When we hear Sir Edward Elgar's Pomp and Circumstance, we think of a graduation ceremony. Actually, Elgar composed it for many kinds of solemn events. This march inspired the Disney artists to recreate the age-old story of Noah's Ark, with one slight twist...
James Levine[src]

Pomp and Circumstance is the seventh and penultimate segment from Fantasia 2000, set to the composition of the same name by Edward Elgar. Based on the story of Noah's Ark from the Book of Genesis, it stars Donald Duck in the role of Noah's first mate, as well as Daisy Duck. During the course of the segment, Donald musters the animals to the Ark and misses, but later reunites with Daisy in the process. The segment has also been used in the final 1 minute and 52 seconds of the closing credits, but omitted Donald Duck, Daisy Duck and the animals.


As the time of the Great Flood draws near, Noah rounds up all the animals and instructs Donald to ensure that they all get onto the Ark. The animals refuse to get on at first, but after a bolt of lightning nearly hits them, they comply. The dragon, griffin, and unicorn sit by, laughing. While he is checking them off on his list, Donald realizes Daisy has not yet come aboard. He rushes back to their hut to get her, not seeing her get on as he does. Suddenly, a giant wave crashes over their hut, washing it away. Daisy, who is watching from the Ark's window, doesn't see Donald rush back to the Ark in time and thinks he got washed away too. Similarly, Donald thinks the same thing about her as he failed to notice she wasn't still in the house and both are saddened by the apparent loss of one another.

Forty days and forty nights later, after the rain has let up, Donald sends out a male dove to check for land, angrily pulling him away from his mate whom he refuses to leave in the process. Upon seeing the female dove cry because her mate is gone, Donald realizes that he is missing Daisy more and more. Elsewhere on the Ark, Daisy looks at a picture of her and Donald that she keeps in a locket, and begins to feel the same way. Throughout the voyage, neither duck knows that the other is there.

The male dove soon returns with a twig from an olive tree. When the Ark lands, Donald looks on as the animals, some of which had young during the journey (for instance, the rabbits had at least 20 young), climb off. As Noah is leaving, he ruffles Donald's head feathers affectionately to congratulate him on a job well done, but Donald continues to feel sad about the apparent loss of Daisy. Elsewhere, Daisy is walking down the plank when she realizes that her locket has fallen off its chain. Going back to look for it, she finds it and bends down to pick it up. Donald, having noticed the locket as he stepped out to sweep up some dirt, reaches down to pick it up at the same time. They both see one another and are overjoyed to see that the other is alive. Daisy kisses Donald and they walk away together, arm in arm, to admire their new home under a beautiful rainbow.


Land of hope and glory
Mother of the free
How shall we extol thee
Who are born of thee?
Wider still and wider
Shall thy bounds be set
God who made thee mighty
Make thee mightier yet
God who made thee mighty
Make thee mightier yet


"Pomp and Circumstance" was a piece selected for Fantasia 2000 at the suggestion of Michael Eisner, who was inspired by attending his son's college graduation, saying "Pomp and Circumstance' probably has more pleasant associations in people's minds than any other piece of music, because it is always being played when you or someone you love are achieving something".

Before the Noah's Ark storyline was chosen, Eisner and the executives wanted the sequence to feature as many Disney characters as possible and was centered on a procession of the Disney Princesses, accompanied by their Princes and children, from Snow White up to Princess Jasmine. Numerous Disney characters in the audience could be seen watching this parade, but a certain set of characters were not invited: the Disney Villains, who proceed to crash the party. Donald Duck was present in this story and tried to send the villains back by using the Sorcerer's Hat, though his efforts to retrieve it provide a number of comedic gags. Eisner had hoped to invite many of the surviving members of the Nine Old Men to come back to animate their characters, but upon a screening of the story reel, they immediately rejected the proposal and called the sequence one of the most terrible things they had ever seen.[1]

"Pomp and Circumstance" eventually shifted to a Noah's Ark storyline, though with a dove in the role of Noah's assistant instead of Donald. Additionally, an alternative Donald Duck sequence was pitched in the form of an Icarus story set to Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries" and bumblebee story set to Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumblebee".

"Pomp and Circumstance" along with "The Carnival of the Animals" and "Symphony No. 5" were recorded on April 25, 1994 by James Levine and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.


  • Many of the animals seen in the segment are visually inspired by past Disney animal characters. Two elephants resemble Colonel Hathi and Winifred, two penguins resemble the Penguin Waiters, two beavers resemble Mr. Busy, two crocodiles resemble Brutus and Nero, two hippos resemble the ones from Dumbo, two eagles resemble Marahute, two vultures resembles the Vultures from Snow White, and two skunks, in the beginning, resemble Flower and Miss Skunk. Frank also makes a cameo as the male frilled lizard.
  • Among the animals featured are: koala, red kangaroo, African and Asian elephants, nine-banded armadillo, European mole, little brown bat, rabbit, American beaver, house mouse, North American porcupine, eastern gray squirrel, Senegal bushbaby, white-handed gibbon, Vervet monkey, mountain gorilla, red fox, gray wolf, polar bear, giant panda, walrus, eastern raccoon, North American river otter, striped skunk, cheetah, lion, leopard, spotted hyena, plains zebra, domestic horse, black rhinoceros, hippopotamus, llama, dromedary, wild boar, domestic pig, white-tailed deer, moose, giraffe, Thomson's gazelle, blue wildebeest, African buffalo, yak, domestic cattle, American bison, domestic sheep, domestic goat, musk-ox, ostrich, Canada goose, mallard duck, mute swan, chicken, Indian peafowl, Gentoo penguin, greater flamingo, mourning dove, cattle egret, great white pelican, bald eagle, griffon vulture, great horned owl, pileated woodpecker, Toco toucan, scarlet macaw, sulfur-crested cockatoo, peregrine falcon, common raven, common nightingale, frilled lizard, veiled chameleon, Burmese python, desert tortoise, Nile crocodile, common frog, firefly and garden snail.
  • Additionally, a unicorn, dragon, and griffin were seen laughing at the ark instead of getting on it, a reference as to why they don't exist in real life.
  • Pomp and Circumstance is the only segment in the sequel with lyrics. The rest are instrumental.


The Disney Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Pomp and Circumstance.


See also

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The Wise Little HenOrphan's PicnicDonald and PlutoDon DonaldModern InventionsDonald's OstrichSelf ControlDonald's Better SelfDonald's NephewsGood ScoutsDonald's Golf GameMother Goose Goes HollywoodDonald's Lucky DayThe Hockey ChampDonald's Cousin GusBeach PicnicSea ScoutsDonald's PenguinThe Autograph HoundOfficer DuckThe Fox Hunt (co-starring Goofy) • Polar Trappers (co-starring Goofy)
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Mr. Duck Steps OutDonald's CrimeCured DuckDonald's Double TroubleSleepy Time DonaldDonald's DilemmaDonald's Dream Voice
Crazy Over DaisyDonald's DiaryHow to Have an Accident at Work
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