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Mel Blanc Project Screening Series @ The Waypost/Tues in Feb/7:00 PM

January 29th, 2011 by Anne Richardson · 2 Comments · News, Oregon Cartoon Institute, Oregonians as inspiration

If you are interested in becoming part of the Mel Blanc Project, a great way to start is to come to the “Learn More About The Mel Blanc Project” screening series at The Waypost, 3120 N. Williams Avenue in Portland.

The series takes place every Tues night in February, at 7:00 PM.

Admission is by donation.

We will be talking about the project, and presenting programs of cartoons and films.

Feb. 1: Mel Blanc Sings

Dennis will show off Mel Blanc’s musicianship and technical prowess with a program of cartoons in which Mel Blanc stays in character as he sings. Dennis will talk about the way these cartoons were made for adults, and were shown in theaters to a general audience. He’ll talk about the way cartoons interpolate popular music, and spoof opera, and what those musical references meant to the audiences these cartoons were originally shown to. Thanks to Heather Perkins for suggesting we explore this topic.

Pickador Porky 1937 Mel Blanc’s Warner Brothers’ debut, as a singing drunk

Hamateur Night 1939 Mel voices various performers in this Tex Avery look at vaudeville

You Oughta Be In Pictures 1940 Mel sings opera as Daffy Duck

Porky’s Midnight Matinee 1941 Mel sings as Porky

Daffy Duckaroo 1942  Mel sings cowboy songs as Daffy

Bugs Bunny Nips The Nips 1944 Mel sings as Bugs Bunny

The Goldbrick 1944 Mel sings straight, as well doing Pvt. Snafu’s voice in this WWII training film

Russian Rhapsody 1944 Mel sings the famous I’m A Gremlin From The Kremlin

Feb. 8: Suppressed Mel Blanc

Dennis’ most popular program. Some of these cartoons have been so successfully suppressed that you can’t see them anywhere. For this screening, Dennis’ intros will focus on Mel Blanc’s voice acting. He’ll also talk about the corporate self censorship which withdrew these films from circulation, and why he believes it is important that they still be seen.

All This And Rabbit Stew 1941 One of the Censored Eleven. Mel does Bugs Bunny. Dir. Tex Avery

Booby Traps 1944 Mel does Private Snafu. Dir. Bob Clampett

Tokio Jokio 1943 Wartime propaganda, now shocking in its un-funnyness. Mel in multiple roles. Dir. Norman McCabe.

Plus Mel in five other suppressed cartoons which cannot be named here.

Feb. 15:  The Evolution of Bugs Bunny

Mel Blanc originated Bugs Bunny’s voice, and was the sole provider of that voice for almost 50 years. Very hard to separate Mel Blanc from his favorite creation! Dennis will show cartoons documenting the chronological progression of Bugs Bunny from his first appearance throughout his heyday in the 40’s.

A Wild Hare 1940  The first official Bugs cartoon, dir. by Tex Avery

All This and Rabbit Stew 1941, dir. by Tex Avery, one of the Censored Eleven

Fresh Hare 1942, dir. by Fritz Freleng

A Corny Concerto 1943, dir. by Bob Clampett

Hare Ribbin 1944, dir. by Bob Clampett

Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips 1944, dir. by Fritz Freleng

Herr Meets Hare 1945, dir. by Fritz Freleng

Southern Fried Rabbit 1953, dir. by Fritz Freleng

The Bugs Bunny Show 1963 Updated Bugs serves as host

Feb. 22: Vaudeville Deluxe, aka the Prehistory of Bugs

If you don’t know what vaudeville was, this program will provide the answer. Dennis will show a full program of vaudeville acts from the 30’s. Mel Blanc grew up watching these performers as a child. Later he worked as a musician in the pit orchestra of Portland’s Orpheum vaudeville theater. When vaudeville moved to radio, Mel Blanc went right along with it.

Vaudeville Deluxe is one of Dennis’ most popular programs. Some Portland New Vaudevillians will be invited to come as unofficial guest speakers.

Gus Visser and His Singing Duck  Ma  She’s Making Eyes at Me 1925

J. Harold Murray sings The Ranger Song c1927

Two College Boys Duke Atterbury  Ken Gillum c1929

The Old Fashioned Way (1934 excerpt) W.C. Fields, juggling

Vitaphone Frolics (1937)

Stanley Brothers

Jack and Loretta Clemens

Zeb Carver and His Cousins

The L.I.M.E.  Trio   Golliwog

The All-Colored Vaudeville Show (1935)

Eunice Wilson and the Five Racketeers

The Three Whippets

Adalaide Hall  with Joe Turner

The Nicholas Brothers

That Goes Double (1933)

Russ Columbo

The Three Cossacks (Roller skaters)

Bernice and Emily (Staircase acrobats)

Roy Smeck (Plays the hell out of ukulele)

Smash Your Baggage (1933)

Entertainers From Small’s Paradise

Elmer Snowden

Roy Eldridge

Dickie Wells

Rubberlegs Williams

Vitaphone Gambols (1937)

A.B.C Trio

Masters and Johnson

Chaz Chase

Elaine Dowling

Tip Top Girls

His College Chums (1928)

Eddie Peabody

Hal Kemp and His Orchestra

The Mel Blanc Project is a great way to learn more about Portland history, get some experience in arts education and administration, and check out the world of non-profits. Come meet us at The Waypost, and find out if you would like to join the team.

We are a volunteer organization and we are looking for volunteers.

Oregon Cartoon Institute was founded by Anne Richardson and Dennis Nyback in 2007 to raise awareness of Oregon’s rich animation and cartooning history. We are fiscally sponsored by the Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission, a 501 (c) (3) non profit organization.

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Walt Mitchell // Feb 11, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    Hi, Folks!

    I note that there’s no caption for the photo. If anyone viewing this online is wondering who the little boy is in the picture, that is Noel Blanc, the only child of Mel and Estelle. If Noel is nine or ten years old here, that would date the photo at 1948 or ‘49.

    Hope everyone is having a ball at these special screenings, and learning a lot about Mel and show business history along the way!

    If anyone has any questions about Mel, professionally or privately, I invite you to e-mail me at the address provided. I’ll do my best to answer all!

    All the best from Walt!

  • 2 Walt Mitchell // Feb 11, 2011 at 7:44 pm

    Walt Mitchell’s e-mail address is

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