A celebration of the golden age of animation and the music it inspired.

“A program proving that beloved cartoon characters like Bugs Bunny and Road Runner have provided more than laughs. Where else could one have heard such richly varied and perfectly executed scores where bits of classical, opera, jazz, folk, and schmaltz combined with such telling effects? ‘Cartoon’ was serious fun of the highest — and funniest — order.” — Chuck Berg, Topeka Capital-Journal

  1. Cartoon (Live) Brian Coughlin; Fireworks Ensemble
  2. There They Go-Go-GO! (Live) Carl Stalling; Fireworks Ensemble
  3. Powerhouse (Live) Raymond Scott; Fireworks Ensemble

The scores created for the animation shorts of the MGM and Warner Bros. studios in the 1940s and 50s were some of the most exciting and vibrant music of its time. Characterized by clever quotation and quick cuts between far-ranging styles, these “cartoon” scores foreshadowed the techniques of avant-garde composers decades later. From the breakneck jazz of Raymond Scott and the ingenious scores of Carl Stalling, Scott Bradley, and Milt Franklyn to contemporary works by John Adams and John Zorn, Cartoon shows how the legacy of Bugs and Daffy lives on not only in childhood memories but in the music of today.

Sample Program

Brian Coughlin: Cartoon
Raymond Scott: War Dance for Wooden Indians
Carl Stalling: The Village Smitty
John Zorn: Carny
Scott Bradley: Puttin’ on the Dog
John Adams: Roadrunner
Raymond Scott: Devil Drums
Robert Patterson: Looney Tunes
Raymond Scott: Powerhouse
Scott Bradley: Dance of the Weed
Raymond Scott: The Penguin
Carl Stalling: There They Go-Go-GO!
Raymond Scott: Dinner Music for Hungry Cannibals
Milton J Franklyn: Baton Bunny