• Stalling is one of the towering musical figures of the 20th century. He went in a different direction from the entire history of composing: he learned how to make things clear and make them have an impact in a matter of seconds. He mastered a range of genres beyond anyone else in the business, and it’s all so damned much fun. He’s been recognized and cited from everyone from John Adams (Chamber Symphony) to John Zorn (Cat O’Nine Tails: Tex Avery Meets the Marquis de Sade), and everyone in between, some of them not named John.

    • DJ JD

      Replying as a second upvote. Chris Rock and C.S. Lewis both said something similar about the concept of inscrutable genius: if a thought or joke is so smart that nobody can understand it, it’s not really that smart. Stalling cleared that hurdle and then some.

      And like you said, he had so much fun doing it! I take that rampant humor (sly, educated, courteous) not just as a tribute to the man’s abilities, but also as another sign of the massive creative chemistry between him and the animation team. Long-Haired Hare, where Bugs Bunny dressed as Leopold Stokowski (even destroying the baton!) to give his burly, bullying man-diva some torment at the Hollywood Bowl, had to give Stalling and the whole Warner Bros orchestra fits when they saw it.

      Which, Leopold was another Disney contact point, seeing as how he did Fantasia and all…