Saturday, July 06, 2013

Life Imitates Animated Art

In a blog last week I talked about my obsession with early Warner Bros. Animation.
One of the Hollywood icons I learned about through WB cartoons was the Hollywood Bowl.  The Bowl was used many times as the back drop for a Bugs or Daffy Duck cartoon.  There are even cartoons of Bugs conducting an orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl.
It is only logical then that someone would find a way to make that cartoon phenomenon a reality.  Last night I was witness to it and for me it was thrilling.
The producers took all the old cartoons that featured the WB characters at the Hollywood Bowl and other classics like "The Rabbit of Seville" and "What's Opera Doc?" and performed them at the Bowl. The evening's program was entitled, "Bugs Bunny at the Symphony."
They stripped the music from the film and played it live on the jumbo screens.  It was amazing on many levels.  The obvious was just the richness of the LA Philharmonic playing live to the memories of my childhood.
But the best part.. there we were watching a cartoon of Bugs Bunny conducting an orchestra at the Bowl and we were at that very minute at the Hollywood Bowl.
As you can see from the pictures... it really is difficult to make out the details of the orchestra and conductor from most seats at the 20,000 seat amphitheater.   It was no different than if Bugs was actually conducting and we had to watch the screen to see him. (like we have done for every other performer we have seen at the Bowl.)
I remembered watching those cartoons as a kid in Texas.  Los Angeles, and the Hollywood Bowl seemed a million miles away from me.  I had no idea that decades later these icons would be part of my home town. To say I dreamed about it would not be accurate. These cartoons influenced me even before I was old enough to figure out I could dream of living in this world some day.
It was just surreal. Every time the Bowl would show up in a cartoon the audience would clap. And I had not considered the idea that 20,000 people would be reacting and laughing at Bug's antics along with me. Wow... for a cartoon freak, and after just having a day to record voices at the Warner Bros. Studio, it was the perfect evening for me.
At times like this I am reminded of a line from the movie "Broadcast News".  William Hurt asks Albert Brooks... "What do you do when your life exceeds your dreams?"  Brooks answered, "You keep it to yourself."
Good advice which I will now take to heart.
As you were,

1 comment:

Dani said...

Hey Jay - Alan and I are going to the Bowl tonight. We also are cartoon fanatics. Alan saw a similar concert YEARS ago and still talk about it. I am looking forward to sharing it with him tonight.