Abstract: In Hollywood theatrical cartoons of the “Punctured Performance” sub-genre, the comedy arises directly from the performance of a piece of music and the attempts to interrupt or co-opt it by a character not originally involved in the performance. The playing of music itself turns into a competition, a conflict both of styles of music and of classes of characters. This paper will employ a structural analysis modified from the work of Vladimir Propp, delineate this sub-genre’s iconography, examine its appeal both to the animators creating it and to its spectators, and discuss its similarities to/distinction from a related sub-genre.
Biographical Statement: Richard J. Leskosky is the Interim Director of the Unit for Cinema Studies of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a past president of the Society for Animation Studies. For about 15 years he has been researching and writing on various sub-genres and their structures in Hollywood theatrical cartoons, several of which he has discussed at previous SAS conferences.