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A Symposium on Popular Songs (1962)

Professor Ludwig von Drake plays a variety of popular music, all of which he wrote. First, ragtime: the Rutabaga Rag, with vegetables dancing in stop-motion. Next, the Charleston, with ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Paul Frees ...
Gloria Wood ...
The Andrews Sisters singing The Boogie Woogie Bakery Man / Helen Kane (voice)
Billy Storm ...
Man Singing Puppy Love Is Here to Stay (voice)
Skip Farrell ...
Bing Crosby (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ray Bauduc ...
Musician-Percussion
Danny Best ...
Musician-Trumpet and Cornet
Nick Fatool ...
Musician-Percussion
Justin Gordon ...
Musician-Tenor Sax
Manny Klein ...
Musician-Trumpet
Abe Lincoln ...
Musician-Trombone
Matty Matlock ...
Musician-Clarinet
Eddie Miller ...
Musician-Tenor Sax
Miff Mole ...
Musician-Trombone
Allan Reuss ...
Musician-Banjo and Guitar
Willie Schwartz ...
Musician-Tenor Sax
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Storyline

Professor Ludwig von Drake plays a variety of popular music, all of which he wrote. First, ragtime: the Rutabaga Rag, with vegetables dancing in stop-motion. Next, the Charleston, with cut-out animation of a singer and dancers. Dixieland and more cut-out animation; the crooner/love ballad; 50's doo-wop; and finally, rockabilly. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A NEW TWIST ON THE OLD "RAGTIME" (original print ad-all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

19 December 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Symposium de chants populaires  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The singers caricatured in this short are: Helen Kane (1920s jazz), Al Jolson (1930s jazz), Bing Crosby (romantic ballad), The Andrews Sisters (boogie woogie), and Paul Anka (rock 'n' roll). See more »

Quotes

Ludwig Von Drake: Around the turn of the century, I was a starving musician, and I was down to my last rutabaga. And anybody knows what that means: I was dressed in rags all the time.
[sobs]
Ludwig Von Drake: Even my clothes was in rags. And I said to myself, "That's it! I will call my new syncopation... ragtime!"
See more »

Connections

Featured in DTV Valentine (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock, Rumble and Roar
Written by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman
Performed by Paul Frees, Gloria Wood, Skip Farrell, Betty Allan & Diane Pendleton
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Professor Sings
15 September 2003 | by (Forest Ranch, CA) – See all my reviews

A Walt Disney LUDWIG VON DRAKE Short Subject.

The renowned Professor performs a few of his own compositions which together comprise A SYMPOSIUM ON POPULAR SONGS.

Disney uses the zany Professor and six wacky songs by the Sherman Brothers to illustrate the musical styles in America during the first half of the 20th Century. In quick succession everything from ragtime to rock 'n' roll is spoofed. This is all done in a spirit of fun - absolutely no attempt is given to actually discuss or compare the various genres. Amusing stop motion animation helps to punctuate the selections. The inimitable Paul Frees provided the voice for the Professor.

Walt Disney (1901-1966) was always intrigued by pictures & drawings. As a lad in Marceline, Missouri, he sketched farm animals on scraps of paper; later, as an ambulance driver in France during the First World War, he drew comic figures on the sides of his vehicle. Back in Kansas City, along with artist Ub Iwerks, Walt developed a primitive animation studio that provided animated commercials and tiny cartoons for the local movie theaters. Always the innovator, his ALICE IN CARTOONLAND series broke ground in placing a live figure in a cartoon universe. Business reversals sent Disney & Iwerks to Hollywood in 1923, where Walt's older brother Roy became his lifelong business manager & counselor. When a mildly successful series with Oswald The Lucky Rabbit was snatched away by the distributor, the character of Mickey Mouse sprung into Walt's imagination, ensuring Disney's immortality. The happy arrival of sound technology made Mickey's screen debut, STEAMBOAT WILLIE (1928), a tremendous audience success with its use of synchronized music. The SILLY SYMPHONIES soon appeared, and Walt's growing crew of marvelously talented animators were quickly conquering new territory with full color, illusions of depth and radical advancements in personality development, an arena in which Walt's genius was unbeatable. Mickey's feisty, naughty behavior had captured millions of fans, but he was soon to be joined by other animated companions: temperamental Donald Duck, intellectually-challenged Goofy and energetic Pluto. All this was in preparation for Walt's grandest dream - feature length animated films. Against a storm of naysayers, Walt persevered and over the next decades delighted children of all ages with the adventures of Snow White, Pinocchio, Dumbo, Bambi & Peter Pan. Walt never forgot that his fortunes were all started by a mouse, or that childlike simplicity of message and lots of hard work always pay off.


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