Tuesday, October 21, 2014

1938 Snow White Pin-Back Button

Walt Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 3.5" button. Marked: "© 1938 WD Ent." According to Hakes, it was likely used by theatre employees or toy department clerks during the initial run of the film. On June 30, 2005, it sold at auction for a whopping $1,101.44.

Monday, October 20, 2014

1979 Radio City Music Hall - Snow White Record

In 1979, Buena Vista Records released a 3313 rpm album featuring the original cast from the Snow White Live stage performance at Radio City Music Hall. Catalog No. 5009.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

1979 Radio City Music Hall - Snow White Songbook

A songbook was published in 1979 featuring the musical numbers from the successful Snow White Live stage performance at Radio City Music Hall. Included are not only the original motion picture songs by Larry Morey and Frank Churchill but also two new tunes by Joe Cook and Jay Blackton.

Photos of the stars, Mary Jo Salerno and Richard Bowne.

The songs.

Sample pages including the new numbers, Will I Ever See Her Again and Welcome to the Kingdom.

Rear endpaper.

Image scans courtesy of the Michael Filippello Collection.

1979 Radio City Music Hall - Snow White Program

An official Snow White program was issued for the 1979 Radio City Music Hall stage show. It contains a total of 36 pages (including both sides of the front and back covers). Here's a few samples...

The front cover features a charming illustration of the Dwarfs peeking their noses over the top with a city skyline behind.

The Snow White story.

The making of the movie.

The making of the stage production.

Mary Jo Salerno and Richard Bowne

The cast and musical numbers.

1979 Radio City Music Hall - Snow White on Video

In 1980, Snow White Live at Radio City Music Hall was taped and aired on HBO. Then on June 26, 1981, Walt Disney Home Video released the performance on VHS and Betamax cassette. The program's total running time is 90 minutes.

A disclaimer on the back of the box reads: "FOR SALE ONLY. Not intended for rental."

VHS images courtesy of The Wonderful Wolrd of Movies. Used with permission.

Apparently, after the video's release, legal issues arose when Richard Bowne (Prince Charming) filed a lawsuit against Disney over royalty payments to the cast. As a result, the show hasn't been reissued since. The original VHS cassettes have become rarities and command a high price. DVDs of the show were never officially produced, though a few bootlegs can be found online.

Here's a short sample clip from the video. The VHS quality is not the best and the audio syncing is a bit off; yet we do get a glimpse at what the performance was like.

Video playlist via cloverpuff.

In 1987, six years after the VHS release, the performance was broadcasted on the Disney Channel.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

1979 Radio City Music Hall - Snow White Newspaper Clippings

The 1979 Snow White musical at Radio City Music Hall was well-received by audiences and considered a success by the critics. Here's a few newspaper clippings from the time period.

This first article appeared in the October 11, 1979 New York Times, one week before the the show opened. A positive anticipation for the show is evident.


October 19, 1979 - New York Times. The article gives the performance a very favorable review.

October 20, 1979 - The Blade. Another positive review.

November 18, 1979 - Family Weekly. A nice piece on Mary Jo Salemo.

Pieces are copyrighted by their respective newspapers.
Special thanks to Colin Cameron for his assistance in locating the articles.

1979 Snow White Live at Radio City Music Hall

It was 35 years ago today, on October 18, 1979, that the musical stage production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs opened at Radio City Music Hall in NYC. The show starred Mary Jo Salerno as the Princess and Richard Bowne was the Prince. Well-known stage performer Anne Francine played the Queen, and Charles Hall the Witch (plus the voice of the Magic Mirror).

The production was scheduled to run for 38 performances in four weeks with an end date of November 18, 1979, at which time it would make way for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. But Snow White didn't stop there. The show continued on for a national tour including a special performance in Washington DC for president Jimmy Carter. On January 11, 1980, it was brought back to the Music Hall by popular demand, where it ran for another 68 performances until finally closing on March 9, 1980.

Images via the Snow White Live facebook page.

The musical numbers included the original songs from the animated film plus several new arrangements. "Will I Ever See Her Again" and "Welcome to the Kingdom" are two original songs written specifically for the show.
  •     Overture
  •     "Welcome To The Kingdom" - Company
  •     "Queen's Presentation" - Company
  •     "I'm Wishing" - Snow White, Greta, Villagers
  •     "One Song" - Prince Charming
  •     "With a Smile and a Song" - Snow White, Animals
  •     "Whistle While You Work" - Snow White, Animals
  •     "Heigh-Ho" - Seven Dwarfs
  •     "Bluddle-Uddle-Um-Dum (The Washing Song)" - Seven Dwarfs
  •     "Will I Ever See Her Again" - Prince Charming
  •     "The Dwarfs' Yodel Song (The Silly Song)" - Snow White, Seven Dwarfs, Animals
  •     "Some Day My Prince Will Come" - Snow White
  •     "Heigh-Ho (Reprise)" - Seven Dwarfs
  •     "Here's The Happy Ending" - Company

Frank Wagner directed and choreographed the show. It was produced by Robert F. Jani, former Creative Director of Walt Disney Productions. The rest of the cast included Don Potter (Doc), Benny Freigh (Grumpy), Richard Day (Happy), Jay Edward Allen (Bashful), Louis Carry (Sneezy), Jerry Riley (Sleepy), Michael E. King (Dopey), Bruce Sherman (Huntsman), Charles Hall (Magic Mirror), Thomas Ruisinger (King), Yolande Bavan (Luna), Heidi Coe (Greta), Lauren Lipson (Mother), and David Pursley (Chamberlain).

Video screen capture of Anne Francine.

The production was immensely popular. A commemorative piano songbook was published by the Bourne Co. and a full-cast 3313 rpm album was issued by Buena Vista Records. In addition, one of the performances was filmed and aired on HBO. It would then be released on home video in 1981.

In 2009, an excellent documentary was produced by filmmaker Michael Sanchez. Magic Mirror - A Look Back at Snow White Live at Radio City Music Hall features interviews with the cast and crew, plus clips from the show. Here it is in two parts...

Part 1

Part 2

Also see in the next posts:

Further reading:

Thursday, October 16, 2014

1958 US Snow White Insert

The 1958 US re-release of Snow White saw an array of different-size posters used in the promotion of the film, including this folded insert. Inserts were often displayed in the lobbies of theatres and usually had a standard measurement of 36" high x 14" wide.

Image courtesy of the Michael Filippello Collection.

Similar artwork is seen on the 1958 Six Sheet, Three Sheet, 40x60, One Sheet, and Half Sheet. A different design was used on the 30x40 poster.