Little Ann Little: One of Your Better Betty Boops

Little Ann Little (1910-1981) a.k.a. Annabelle Little a.k.a Ann Rothschild was one of the principal actresses who played Betty Boop in animated cartoons, in live performance and on radio.

She was only 15 when she was hired for the pony chorus of the Greenwich Village Follies. She got to play the role of Betty Boop after winning a contest sponsored by Paramount Pictures, which distributed Fleischer Studios cartoons. She possessed the requisite squeaky voice, and was also only 4′ 11″, 100 lbs, ideal for personal appearances in character. She voiced Betty Boop in cartoons from 1930 through 1933, and also toured vaudeville theatres and presentation houses, performing alongside cartoonist Pauline Comanor. Comanor drew Betty Boop; while Little Ann Little played her. Little (Rothschild) continued making such appearances until the mid ’40s, after which she taught acting, singing and dancing in Florida. For a while she also had her own NBC radio show. She died in Fort Myers, Florida in 1981.

To find out more about the history of vaudeville please see No Applause, Just Throw Money: The Book That Made Vaudeville Famous