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A musical family
Adriana was born into a home full of song. Her father Guido Caselotti, an immigrant from Italy, was a teacher of music and a vocal coach. Her mother, Maria Caselotti (from Naples), was a singer in the Royal Opera. Her older sister Louise was also quite musical; she gave voice lessons and sang opera. It goes without saying that Adriana herself was also vocally gifted, given her strong musical background.
Walt Disney & Snow White
In the mid-1930s, Guido Caselotti was hired by Walt Disney to help cast parts in his new full-length feature, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Walt asked Guido if any of his students seemed capable of singing for the lead role. Upon hearing 18-year-old Adriana's natural, angelic voice, Walt knew there was no other choice for the part. The film was released on December 21 1937 and grossed $184,925,486, which, adjusted for modern times would be approximately $681,250,000. Adriana herself was paid only $970 for her contributions to the film.
Adriana made a concious decision to not appear in any other films following Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, in order to not "spoil the illusion of Snow White". The only other work she did following her premiere was an uncredited role in The Wizard of Oz, as the voice of Juilet during the Tin-Man's song, "If I Only had a Heart".
She did, however, do a few promotional spots for Snow White, signing memorabilia. Later in her life, she sold autographs. She also made an attempt at an opera career.
Death and immortality
Eleven years before her death, Adriana was diagnosed with cancer in her left breast, which she eventually had removed. In 1996, she again developed cancer – this time, in her lungs. On January 19 1997, Adriana Caselotti died at home of respirartory failure. She was 80 years old. Her body was cremated, and the ashes were scattered in the waters of Newport Beach. Adriana was once quoted saying, "I know my voice will never die". Since her passing, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs has become one of the most well-known Disney movies, assuring her voice – and herself – immortality.