Voice of Disney’s Original Sleeping Beauty Writes Open Letter to Fans on Her 86th Birthday

An appreciative princess! Mary Costa, the original voice of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, penned an open letter on her 86th birthday, Tuesday, April 5, expressing major thanks for her fans.

“As I celebrate my 86th birthday, I would like to acknowledge my gratitude to all of you who have written such wonderful letters to me throughout the years,” the retired voice actress began. “Hearing from you has always been a great source of inspiration.”

Princess Aurora
Princess Aurora in 'Sleeping Beauty.' Everett Collection

Costa then went on to reflect on the magic of working with the late Walt Disney (who died of lung cancer in 1966), and how portraying the spirited turned sleepy princess in the iconic 1959 animated film forever changed her life.

“One of the most significant achievements in my career was working with Walt Disney as the voice of Princess Aurora for his animated masterpiece Sleeping Beauty,” the Hollywood veteran wrote. “As a young performer in my first major role, Mr. Disney often encouraged me by saying: ‘Mary, just remember the three D’s … Dedication, Determination and Discipline, and you’ll achieve your Dreams!’”

Mary Costa
Mary Costa attends the 50th anniversary release of the Walt Disney classic 'Sleeping Beauty' in 2008. Jemal Countess/WireImage

Costa, who was only 22 years old when she landed the part of Princess Aurora, also recalled her joy in “meeting and working with multiple generations of wonderful young people, as well as extraordinary adults who forever remain young at heart.”

She added, “This has truly been a great blessing in my life.”

Although she considers giving life to Aurora a “blessing,” Costa admitted that, after so many years of corresponding with Disney enthusiasts, this “princess” is finally pooped.

“Through the years, I have always personally read and signed as many of your requests as possible,” she wrote. “After having been so deeply inspired by letters from you, I have come to regard you not as fans, but as my friends. I have recently realized, however, that continuing to attempt to answer the volume of autograph requests I regularly receive has become more than any one 'Princess' can possibly handle.”

Costa added that she will continue to make appearances at events, and is excited about connecting with her fans face to face.

“Therefore, I want to let you know why I will no longer be able to answer requests for autographs that I receive by mail, and to share with you how deeply I have appreciated your loyalty,” she concluded. “I have always been and always will be delighted to meet each of you in person, and I look forward to seeing you and signing autographs at future events.” 

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