A representative of NBC has confirmed that the legendary voice of “Saturday Night Live” Dominick “Don” Pardo has died. He was 96.
A long time veteran television and radio announcer Pardo retired from NBC in 2004, but he still provided the introductions to SNL, which were pre-recorded from his home in Tucson, Arizona. Pardo only missed the show’s seventh season out of the current total of 39.
Show producer and creator Lorne Michaels once said this about the iconic voice announcer.
“I can’t imagine the show without [Don,] as long as he’s there, I stay young.”
Pardo got his break in television in 1956, when he became the first voice for The Price is Right, where he remained until the show moved to ABC in 1963. A 2010 Television Hall of Fame inductee, Pardo lent his voice to other game shows such as Winning Streak, Jackpot and Jeopardy! Along with legendary comic Bob Hope, they were the only two people to have lifetime contracts with NBC.
Pardo joined NBC radio as a staff announcer on June 15, 1944. Wherever the network required him to use his voice skills, he would apply his talent. This included TV, radio and wartime reporting during World War II.
Pardo was married to Catherine (Kay) Lyon in 1938. She preceded him in death in July of 1995. The couple had five children together.
R.I.P. Don Pardo! You are a legend! Saturday Night Live won’t be the same without you!
Sources: TVLine, mashable, IMDb