Pinto Colvig

Disney Legend Pinto Colvig is Born

A goofy man by the name of Vance DeBar “Pinto” Colvig was born on this day in 1892 in Jacksonville, Oregon. A master of sound effects, Pinto appeared in a number of Disney animated films and shorts, providing sounds for spitting grasshoppers, belching bugs, and grunting hogs amongst other things, but today he is best known as the original voice of Goofy. Goofy wasn’t the only Disney character he voiced, however, and Pinto performed for hundreds of personalities, including the role of the Grasshopper in the Silly Symphony The Grasshopper and the Ants, the voice of the Practical Pig in Three Little Pigs, Grumpy and Sleepy in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and also barks and sounds for Pluto. Besides the countless human sound effects he could imitate, he provided some well-known sounds with a battered old trombone he once purchased in a pawn shop with the intention of joining a circus band. After several attempts to play it he gave up, but instead used it for sound effects in various films. The battered condition of the instrument made it possible to produce sounds that would be impossible with a new trombone. In the 1930s, when the famous conductor of Fantasia, Leopold Stokowski, was visiting the Disney studios, Pinto had the opportunity to demonstrate some of his sound effects for the maestro. When he initially pulled out the beat-up old instrument, a startled look crept over Stokowski’s face. After the impromptu presentation, Stokowski said, “Thank Heaven! I thought you were going to play it!”