Monday, June 23, 2008

Tiki Room Vintage Tickets and Music

Forty five years ago today Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room opened its doors and thrilled audiences for the very first time. Today let’s celebrate with a few vintage items.

First up is a pair of what I believe to be the original style of Tiki Room tickets from 1963. I have seen these for sale (rarely) for lots of money (too much) and they always state they are from 1963. They are not dated, but they do match the style of all the original 1963 Enchanted Tiki Room art work. Those of you that have been with the blog since the early days will recognize these from a prior post (link). These have been rescanned and hey, it’s a celebration so we get to see them again.

The back is not very interesting, consisting of just this:

Here is a rare ticket; this is from a “Magi-Pak” ticket book from February 1964. The ticket book contains 15 “Any Attraction” tickets, but since Walt’s Tiki Room was owned by him, not Disneyland, it required a separate ticket (like the ones above). This ticket book has 15 tickets, but one is special, it’s also good for the Tiki Room. The accounting on all of this must have been interesting. How much did “Disneyland” pay Walt to include this ticket in the book? It’s kind of like moving money from your left pocket to you right pocket!

How about some Vintage audio visual fun? “A Disneyland Record” presents songs from Walt Disney’s The Enchanted Tiki Rook. The cover is dated 1968. The 29¢ price was “blacked out”; I wonder what it was changed to?

The record itself is in fine shape for being 40 years old.

This must be the original sound track, it sure sounds fun. I broke it into two pieces, blog spot was not letting me load part two, check back later, I’ll try and update it.

Tomorrow; More Grad Nite? Sure, why not....


Katella Gate said...

I hope you will all pardon me for monopolizing the comments page today. The tickets from the Enchanted Tiki Room reminded me of a story that happened just about 10 years ago. I have not shared this story publicly, and probably would not do so now if not prompted by today’s posting.


I was up late last night working on my “Katella Gate” profile… actually just filling it out for the first time since it seems I am using this account more and more. Naturally, before heading to bed I thought I’d check the little circle of Disney-related G Blogs right after the stroke of midnight to catch the new entries.

Today’s posting shows the chanting Tiki Masks, which brought back some memories. Back in the 1990’s I ran a lithograph company that specialized in ocean liner posters, and naturally it was listed in the local phone book. One day I got a phone call out of the blue from a customer with a strangely familiar voice. He explained that he had a son, a federal judge, whose office had a large blank spot on the wall. He went on to ask if we had any posters of the Cutty Sark, or some other famous sailing ship to fill the hole. I explained that we only did ocean liners such as the Queen Mary or Titanic. He expressed polite disappointment and the call was quickly drawing to a close when I asked, purely on a lark, “Your voice is familiar but I’m sure we’ve never spoken. Are you in show business?”

He said “You won’t know my name, but I do the voice for Tony the Tiger… would you like to hear it?”

My mind went blank for a second trying to figure out if this was the real deal, or if I was just talking to a fruity relative of Baron Munchausen. With noting to loose I said “Sure” and he ripped loose with an authentic “They’re Great” … exactly the same slogan with exactly the same voice melody I had heard since I could remember.

I was stunned. All I could say was the obvious “You’re Thurl Ravens …. croft” The voice at the other end brightened considerably and said, “Oh, you know me by name. Most people just know me as Tony the Tiger”.

I have worked in the industry and have met many people, but for the first time I was actually star struck. I remember starting out with a weak reply, not wanting to outright contradict him, by saying, “Well Tony is of course excellent voice work, but there’s the Grinch Song you did back in 1966 for the Dr. Seuss special with Chuck Jones .. I’m sorry you didn’t get screen credit for that … and then there’s all that good stuff you did for Disney movies and the Park…”

Thurl’s voice got much smaller. I think it was his turn to be surprised, and he asked “You know about the work for Disneyland?”

By this time I was in full fanboy mode and started rattling off his credits. “Yes. Of course you did voice acting for Sword in the Stone, but for Disneyland specifically you sang for the Graveyard scene in the Haunted Mansion as one of the busts, and then there’s Fritz in the Tiki Room. Funny how Fritz got do deliver all the really outrageous puns about Herr Schmitt and Offenbach and clapping with both hands…” I must have prattled on like that for a few moments but eventually ran out of steam.

Thurl then asked with real curiosity: “Which was your favorite?” Without blinking I said “My favorite is Tiki Mask No. 2… you know, where Wally Boag takes the lead singing the first measures of the chant and you follow up.”

Thurl was completely puzzled with my selection and asked “Why that in particular?”

“Because your voice and delivery meshes so well with Wally’s. Wally starts off the chant with his thin, reedy voice with a choppy, excited rhythm and then you come in with your deep, smooth voice under his chanting with an even beat. It’s like counterpoint, but only in rhythm; there’s no melody yet. There isn’t even a key signature, but towards the end of your chanting duet George Bruns does lay down a quiet pulse on the tonic in the background to establish the key when the flower chorus eventually joins back in. Besides, I loved it when I was a 5 year old kid back in 1965. The utter shock and amazement I felt when the Tiki Poles started chanting … It was a place so magical, even the building was alive.”

Well, with that you could practically feel the sunbeams burst through the telephone.

Thurl finished up by saying “Well you certainly know all the stuff I did.” and I replied “Only because all the stuff you did is worth knowing.”

And that was it. There were a few more social pleasantries, and Thurl gave me a “hail and farewell” with another Tony roar and I hung up the phone.

Within minutes I was furious at myself. I spent the entire conversation talking when I should have been listening. I don’t think I let poor Thurl get two words in edgewise. It took me several weeks before I realized that the conversation actually unfolded in the best way possible. Thurl’s gift to me was a lifetime’s worth of entertainment. I suppose my gift to him was proof that out of the millions of people that have heard his performances, one person, met at random, was listening.

Major Pepperidge said...

Wow, Katella Gate, what a great story! Sounds like you made Thurl's day as much as he made yours.

And Tim, I have NO Tiki Room tickets, so I am very jealous of yours. I love the graphic tikis on them!

The Viewliner Limited said...

I really love the Tiki Room record. What a beauty. Fantastic story, Katella Gate. Tim, maybe you should post the story from Katella Gate about Thurl. That way more people will read what a wonderful person and a great man he was.

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Katella Gate, what a GRRRRREAT story, wow, thanks so much for sharing, I am going to post your entire response this weekend.

If anyone is interested, here is part two of the record:

Blogspot wouldn’t let me upload it cause it about 103mb, 3 too many…

mr wiggins said...

Great post VDT -- and Katella Gate that was a truly beautiful story! (I'd betcha it was the kind of conversation that Thurl would have remembered for a long time.)

My all time Tiki Room memory is as a teenager in the late summer of '63, seeing it for the first time -- waiting at night in an incredibly long line, excitement building to the point of blood vessels bursting, only to be bummed that we wound up sitting in the back corner. (I didn't know the tikis would be animated.) The first part of the show was amazing enough, but when the tikis came to life six inches from my head, I nearly jumped out of my skin. I wasn't the only one -- the whole audience went nuts, and I mean the room came unglued. No matter how many times you'd read that summer's issue of National Geographic, no matter how techno geeky and Disney-savvy, nothing could prepare you for seeing it for the first time that summer. Sheer, delightful, mind boggling surprise. By the time "Hawaiian War Chant" modulated up and the tempo hit max, the tension was terrific -- nobody knew what was going to happen or how far it would go. When the thunder clapped and the lights went out, people jumped, kids hung onto their parents, and my little brother & sisters were beyond freaked. Then the upbeat ending and the march outside into the Adventureland night -- tiki torches burning, Jungle Cruise boat engines revving, the audience all grinning and laughing and talking and a bit dazed, as if none of us quite believed what we'd seen. I remember parents who immediately wanted to see it again pulling their kids who didn't (too scared!) back into the long line. Man! Whatta show!!

tericson said...

Another Tiki fan here!

I've been trying to update a script that I found years ago (see my post on ApePen's forum here:

katella gate - I had no idea that Wally and Thurl did the Tiki chants - could you please take a look at the script and fill me in a little?

I took the script and this Wordle, too:


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