One week ago on the first day of the 2011 D23 Expo in the Anaheim Convention Center, the newest group of Disney Legends were inducted in front of a crowd of thousands of Disney fans. Since sharing the unforgettable performances by the honored Disney Princess voices as well as a few Muppets, I’ve been repeatedly asked to also offer a look at the speeches given at the ceremony – which you can now find videos of below.
The Disney Princess voices were the first to be featured at the 2011 ceremony. The speeches they gave seemed to increase in emotion as they went along, beginning with a feeling of surprise from Anika Noni Rose and ending with the overjoyed Jodi Benson, expressing her appreciation for The Walt Disney Company and pride for being a Disney cast member.
Video: Anika Noni Rose, voice of Princess Tiana, accepts her 2011 Disney Legends award
Video: Linda Larkin, speaking voice of Princess Jasmine, accepts her 2011 Disney Legends award
Video: Lea Salonga, singing voice of Princess Jasmine and Mulan, accepts her 2011 Disney Legends award
Video: Paige O’Hara, voice of Princess Belle, accepts her 2011 Disney Legends award
Video: Jodi Benson, voice of Princess Ariel, accepts her 2011 Disney Legends award
Following these heart-warming speeches, each of the Princess voices returned to the stage with Linda Larkin introducing the ladies who would each sing some of the most famous Disney songs in history, our videos of which have been viewed nearly 150,000 times in the last week. Make sure you don’t miss them, particularly the group performance at the end.
Host Tom Bergeron then introduced a series of non-performing Legends, which included Ray Watson and the families of honorees Bo Boyd, Guy Williams, and Jack and Bonita Wrather. I unfortunately did not capture these speeches on video, but will share audio of them on a future episode of our Inside the Magic podcast. In the meantime, here are photos of each:
Next the always animated Regis Philbin took the stage, after being introduced on video by his talk show co-host Kelly Ripa. He first joked around with Tom Bergeron, then shared a few amusing and energetic stories. It’s incredible that just yesterday he celebrated his 80th birthday.
Video: Regis Philbin accepts his 2011 Disney Legends award
Wrapping up the ceremony, Lisa Henson took the stage to begin to honor her father, Jim Henson. Lisa is the current CEO of the Jim Henson Company and had wonderful thoughts to share about her dad.