pp. 70-71 pp. 72-73 pp. 74-75

WALT DISNEY, nothing if not thorough, knew from the very start that when he brought his cartoons to life he'd have to make them talk: and away back when Mickey Mouse was his staple, Walt himself did all the talking for Mickey, and everything went with a swing. His problem, however, was not simply to provide a voice for Mickey: he had, as time went on, to find a complete range of voices to suit his characters.

FIRST MAJOR HURDLE was Donald Duck, originally a small-part player in a Silly Symphony. When Donald took the limelight the Disney studio (a Mecca for animal imitators) remembered shy, brown-eyed little Clarence Nash who had been auditioned a year before. What Clarence (now "Ducky" Nash) did with his part in “The Wise Little Hen“ had a lot to do with Donald Duck’s subsequent popularity-and ”Ducky” Nash’s own career, too.

PINTO COLVIG, a man of many voices, is a definite loss to the live stage, but when it comes to putting words into the mouth of the famous dog Goofy, Pinto does plenty. Pinto Colvig joined the Disney lot long before Goofy; he did many voices for Disney animals, but they were just jobs; Pluto, then Goofy, were the perfect outlet for the best of his imitative talent.

AFTER A TRIP to South America Walt planned a film to set down his impressions of the Latins, called it “Saludos, Amigos” and introduced a Brazilian parrot. For the parrot's voice he tested several Brazilian actors, chose Jose Oliveira, who had the proper accent and correct mannerisms for the part. Guitar-playing, Samba-dancing Oliveira doesn’t mind the parrot being called Jose too.

CLIFF EDWARDS used to be "Ukelele Ike". He was so well known in entertainment circles that when Walt Disney created Jiminy Cricket for Pinocchio there seemed to be only one possible actor to get the right scrape-throat cricket sound. Cliff it was, and Cliff it has been ever since. The voices of Disney characters, now you've met them, are important and impressive people.

CLARA CLUCK, the opera-singing hen, might never have come about had not Florence Gill, scholerly musician and vocalist, risen to the heights of opera and had to forego it because her health was not strong enough. She went to America, lived in California, and one day, while humming ”Swanee River”, clucked it for fun, thought it sounded good, took the act along to Disney. "How would you like an opera-clucking hen?” she asked. Disney decided that he'd like it fine.