Concise asymmetric total syntheses of vindoline (1) and vindorosine (2) are detailed based on a unique intramolecular [4 + 2]/[3 + 2] cycloaddition cascade of 1,3,4-oxadiazoles inspired by the natural product structures. A chiral substituent on the tether linking the dienophile and oxadiazole was used to control the facial selectivity of the initiating Diels-Alder reaction and set the absolute stereochemistry of the remaining six stereocenters in the cascade cycloadduct. This key reaction introduced three rings and four C-C bonds central to the pentacyclic ring system setting all six stereocenters and introducing essentially all the functionality found in the natural products in a single step. Implementation of the approach for the synthesis of 1 and 2 required the development of a ring expansion reaction to provide a 6-membered ring suitably functionalized for introduction of the Δ(6,7)-double bond found in the core structure of the natural products. Two unique approaches were developed that defined our use of a protected hydroxymethyl group as the substituent that controls the stereochemical course of the cycloaddition cascade. In the course of these studies, several analogues of vindoline were prepared containing deep-seated structural changes presently accessible only by total synthesis. These analogues, bearing key modifications at C6-C8, were incorporated into vinblastine analogues and used to probe the unusual importance (100-fold) and define the potential role of the vinblastine Δ(6,7)-double bond.