You may not be able to recognize the face, but when you heard the voice, you knew exactly who is was.
Don Pardo, the durable television and radio announcer who became as much a part of the cultural landscape as the shows and products he touted, died yesterday at his home in Tucson, Arizona. He was 96.
Pardo’s delivery, with its swoops in pitch and pregnant pauses, graced newscasts, game shows and TV programs for more than 60 years. During the original version of “Jeopardy!,” his answers to the question, “Tell ‘em what they’ve won, Don Pardo,” became a memorable part of the program.
Pardo was also an integral part of “Saturday Night Live” for almost four decades, in his role heralding the cast’s names to kick off each show. Former cast member Jimmy Fallon once said, “Nothing is like the moment when Don Pardo says your name.”
In 1994, NPR’s Susan Stamberg met Pardo at NBC Studios in New York to talk with him about his long and illustrious career. From the archives, here is her report.
- Susan Stamberg, special correspondent for NPR. She was the first woman to anchor a national nightly news program, and has won every major award in broadcasting.