Monday, May 11, 2009
My early brush with Fame: Bianca Majorie
Im not sure what brought up this long lost memory, but the other morning it all popped into my head. I couldnt of been any older than 7, and I recall this woman named Bianca who lived down the street from us that my parents had become friends with. I clearly remember her face, her little house in Santa Cruz, and a handful of paintings propped against the wall. I also remember hearing how she had worked at Disney and with what I recall as some bitterness, she had developed the character Dumbo.
I was having a hard time sleeping that morning so I got up and did a little research, and yup, there she was, Bianca Majorie, the first woman to be hired by Walt to the Story department at Disney in the '30's. All of you in the business understand what a monumental achievement it is to make it into the story department, and for a woman in the 1930s to be brought into such a male dominated industry should clearly indicate what a Titan she must have been. Im happy that I was able to find out about her, but still its disappointing nothing what so ever is mentioned about her in my Disney Animation Studios "Story" Archive Book or much at all anywhere, even though she seems to be truly a monumental and historical figure of the Animation industry. One touching and profound quote of hers does remain though in regards to the Elmer the Elephant story; "that usefulness is more important than beauty ... that things that are not decorative may be extremely useful and should be cherished for that reason."