The Gummi Bears
The Voices Behind Zummi Gummi and Grammi Gummi


(Zummi Gummi)

Master ventriloquist, veteran television star, and a respected inventor of medical equipment, Paul Winchell provides the voice for Zummi Gummi, the amateur Merlin of the Gummi group and keeper of the nearly forgotten magic of the Gummies. Unfortunately, Zummi's not all that expert with Gummi magic, and he gets awfully nervous and flustered when under any kind of pressure.

Born in 1922 in New York, Winchell overcame a childhood bout with polio and made his show business debut at 13 as a winner on radio's popular "Amateur Hour." By his early 20s, he was the star of his own radio show.

His television debut came in 1947 on an early variety series, "Show Business, Inc." A year later, he starred in his own "The Bigelow Show." With the exception of Edgar Bergen, Winchell was the most popular ventriloquist of the 1950s, providing entertainment to audiences of all ages with the help of his bow-tied, wise-cracking dummy Jerry Mahoney, the dim-witted Knucklehead Smith, and others.

His television career included "The Paul Winchell/Jerry Mahoney Show" (1950-54), "Circus Time" (1957-58), and the quiz show "Keep Talking" (1958-60), on which Winchell appeared as a panelist. By the 1960s, he was devoting most of his time to doing voices for children's cartoons, including "The Smurfs," "Goober and the Ghostchasers," and several Dr. Seuss specials.

At age 35, Winchell gave it all up to pursue a medical career and earned a doctorate in science from Columbia University. In 1975, he made international headlines for his invention of the first artificial heart.


(Grammi Gummi)

June Foray is the voice that launched a thousand characters. She has been heard as Rocky, the Flying Squirrel; the notorious spy Natasha Fatale; Tweety Pie's Grandma; Ma Beagle in Disney's "DuckTales"; and Jokey in "The Smurfs," as well as hundreds of others.

For "Disney's Adventures of the Gummi Bears," Foray displays her considerable talents as the voice of Grammi Gummi, the official tastemistress of Gummiberry Juice, and the worst -- and only -- cook in Gummi Glen. Grammi is as tough as the cookies she bakes, but her decisions and actions always spring from good intentions.

Theatrically trained, Foray didn't plan to specialize in voices, but after working with comedian/satirist Stan Freberg on some comedy records, she found herself in demand. For Disney, she provided several voices for "Cinderella" and "Peter Pan," as well as for "Who Framed Roger Rabbit." She has also worked with such noted animators as Jay Ward, Chuck Jones, Tex Avery, and Friz Freleng, lending her voice to hundreds of cartoons and animated television series, specials, and commercials.

Although Foray continues her phenomenal vocal acting career in radio, television, and film, she has found the time to become a published writer, and has written, produced, and narrated an animated short film, "You Can't Teach an Old Dog New Tricks," which was presented on HBO.

She is currently serving her fifth term on the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is also Chairperson of the Academy's Student Film Awards. Foray is a past faculty member at USC and is on the board of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.

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