Fascinated by the colour and sound developments in motion pictures, Charles moved the family to Hollywood, California, in 1937 and soon began working at the Walt Disney Studios writing music for cartoon shorts, then feature films, such as Pinocchio and Bambi. By 1944 he had become General Musical Director at Disney Studios. In 1950 he transferred to the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) Studios as Associate General Musical Director and in 1958 became General Musical Director. In 1955, after he placed Bill Haley’s song “Rock Around The Clock” in the MGM movie Blackboard Jungle, the “rock and roll” music craze spread worldwide.
In January 1960 he resigned his position as head of the Music Department at MGM Studios and he and Harriett moved to Wilmette, Illinois, so he could take up his duties in the National Baha’i Center.
Music-related activities at the Baha’i World Center
Throughout their 26 years at the Baha’i World Centre, Harriett devoted herself to assisting in various offices at the Centre as well as being Charles’ lifelong companion during 58 years of maniage. Their love of music was sustained by regular attendance at the performances of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. And, as a gift to the Baha’i friends at the World Centre, they frequently opened their home for musical evenings. The demanding work as a member of the Universal House of Justice left little time or energy for creating musical compositions, but music listening was a constant source of strength and spiritual enrichment. Amongst his papers was found the compilation “Extracts from the Baha’i Writings on Music” in which he had underlined certain passages such as: “We have made music a ladder by which souls may ascend to the realm on high” [Kitab-i-Aqdas]; “A wonderful song giveth wings to the spirit and filleth the heart with exaltation” [Baha'i World Faith, 334]; and “Music is one of the important arts…. although music is a material affair, yet its tremendous effect is spiritual, and its greatest attachment is to the realm of the spirit. … In this Cause the art of music is of paramount importance” [Abdu'l-Baha, "Table Talk," 'Akka, July 1909, quoted in Herald of the South, 13 January 1933, 2-3].