Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Music Moment - "Dance of the Comedians"

Classical music and classic animation seems like an odd pairing, but they do complement each other so well.
If you are a fan of the classic Warner Bros cartoons, you are probably aware of certain classical music tunes that have been thrown into the shorts' soundtracks that comment on the action happening on screen or simply plays on the gag. Surely you are familiar with Franz Liszt's "Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2" or Rossini's "William Tell Overture" or Johann Strauss II's "The Blue Danube"?
There was one classical tune that was used quite consistently with Chuck Jones' Road Runner series that I always thought was a cue created by composer Carl Stalling for chase cues. Such as in "Gee Whiz-z-z-z-z-z-z" (1956)...
Once the Silver Age of Animation began during the 90's and Warner Bros began producing TV series, the tune started to turn up in their soundtracks like Animaniac's "Draculee, Draculaa" (1993)…
It wasn't up until recently I discovered the "chase cue" was actually an excerpt from a Czech comic opera entitled "The Bartered Bride" by composer Bedrich Smetana. Please enjoy "Dance of the Comedians"(composed during the period 1863-66)…
The tune really does make for great chase music and it is used almost in it's entirety here in Taz-Mania's "Bottle Cap Blues"(1992)…
.. as well as Chuck Jones' final Road Runner cartoon "Chariots of Fur" (1994).


Monday, February 02, 2015

May Musical Masterpieces

More Looney Tunes animated shorts will be released on home video this upcoming May with a new collection of classic musical shorts…
http://tvshowsondvd.com/news/Bugs-Bunny-Looney-Tunes-Comedy-Hour-Musical-Masterpieces/20694
True, most of these are already available on past releases, but hopefully good sales will lead to Warners releasing the rest of the classic library to DVD and Blu-Ray in the future...