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May 5, 1929 – Singer, Actress, and Disney Legend Ilene Woods is Born

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“I didn’t know that I would even be considered until, of course, Mr. Disney heard the recordings, and that’s when the excitement started, that’s when all the butterflies started batting around inside of my stomach, when I was called to see Mr. Disney.”

On May 5, 1929, Jacqueline Ruth “Ilene” Woods was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. She began acting at the age of two, and at the age of 15, she was hired to sing on “The Philco Hall of Fame” radio show, which led to her own radio show The Ilene Woods Show. During this show, she became friends with songwriters Mack David and Jerry Livingston. In 1948, David and Livingston asked Woods to record a few songs for them, which were presented to Walt Disney for inclusion in the animated feature film Cinderella. After hearing the demo recordings, Disney himself asked Woods to voice the titular character. Woods accepted, and was surprised to learn that she had won the role against almost 400 people. Woods was named as a Disney Legend in 2003. She passed away from Alzheimer’s disease on July 1, 2010.

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