Ilene Woods, voice of Cinderella, dies
Singer was 18 when Walt Disney chose her for title character
Ilene Woods, the voice of Cinderella in Disney's classic animated film, has died at age 81.
The singer was working in radio in 1948 when she recorded a demo tape for an upcoming Disney film as a favour to two songwriting friends. That favour turned into a big opportunity as Walt Disney himself decided to audition her two days later .
Disney had already heard about 300 singers and wasn't satisfied until he heard Woods, who was only 18 at the time. She voiced the speaking and singing parts over a two-year period for the title character in Cinderella, released in 1950.
"I loved doing the character," she told the Houston Chronicle in 2005. "When my dad saw the movie, he said he saw me in the facial expressions, hand movements and mannerisms. Marc Davis, who animated [Cinderella] would watch me record and picked up on things."
Woods also sang on the Perry Como and Arthur Godfrey shows before retiring in the 1970s.
She was declared a Disney Legend in 2003.
With files from The Associated Press