Friday, January 30, 2015

The blog will be updated again on February 9.
I have been spending time over the last few weeks researching Disney's musical projects from the late '30s and mid-'40s and while doing so, stumbled upon the following article released in the Disney Studio's newsletter, The Bulletin dated February 14, 1941. The article establishes clearly one important date when it comes to the "production" of the projected Future Fantasias. I thought you would enjoy it:

[Stokowski Mounts Studio Podium to Record new Fantasia Numbers

Nimbus-haired Leopold Stokowski, behind locked doors on the live-action stage this Sunday night [February 16, 1941], will conduct a preselected symphony orchestra while studio recorders hum.
Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, Sibelius’ Swan of Tuonela and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumble Bee will be recorded. These selections are tentatively listed as future alternates or encores for Fantasia.
During the week, studio carpenters sawed and hammered, erected in three days a plywood orchestra shell which RCA technicians declared to be acoustically perfect.
Fifteen orchestra stands of varying height were also built to facilitate placement of instrument choirs.]

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Help needed in Washington D.C.

I am still looking for a volunteer in Washington D.C.who would be willing to conduct some research in the Archives of American Art. If you are willing to help, could you please email me at

Jim Korkis recently reminded me that the magazine The Atlantic Monthly commissioned writer Paul Hollister to do a series of articles on Walt (just as Pete Martin did later for The Saturday Evening Post) which would be released as a book.  Apparently, the manuscript was completed but never released. The Paul Hollister papers are preserved by the Archives of American Art and I am wondering if the manuscript might be there.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

 I just picked up this great magazine from Uruguay and thought that some of you might enjoy it.

Monday, January 26, 2015

This just in from Amid Amidi:

[Hadn't seen anything about this on your site so I wanted to make sure you were aware of the new bio about Disney Burbank architect Kem Weber, written by Christopher Long.

There's a chapter on the Disney studio with about 20 images from the Weber archives at UCSB (mostly familiar). The write-up, while nicely done, also relies on familiar published material (Gennawey, Gabler, Thomas, the usual suspects), and there are few, if any, new revelations. The book is short on key details; for example, how did Disney choose Weber or even know about him? Still unclear.

Going through the book, one realizes that the Disney studio, while a major commission, isn't one of the designer/architect's best works. The book's real value, therefore, is the context it provides. It helps us better understand how the Disney studio fits into the rest of Weber's expansive body of work.]

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Disney Books Network has just been updated.

Saturday, January 24, 2015