'La Gioconda' is an opera in four acts by Amilcare Ponchielli set to an Italian libretto by Arrigo Boito, based on Angelo, tyran de Padoue, a play in prose by Victor Hugo, dating from 1835. First performed in 1876, 'La Gioconda' was a major success for Ponchielli, as well as the most successful new Italian opera between Verdi's Aida (1871) and Otello (1887). The 3rd act of the Opera ends with the world-famous ballet number 'Dance of the Hours' (Italian: Danza delle ore). It depicts the hours of the day through solo and ensemble dances. Later performed on its own, the 'Dance of the Hours' was at one time one of the best known and most frequently performed ballets. It became even more widely known after its inclusion in the 1940 Disney animated film 'Fantasia' where it is depicted as a comic ballet featuring anthropomorphized ostriches, hippos, elephants, and alligators.