Barney Wiki

Patricia Gerilyn "Patty" Wirtz (born July 31, 1959 in Manhattan, Kansas) is an American voice actress who is best known as the original voice of BJ on Barney & Friends.


Wirtz started out as a stage actress. She first worked at the Casa Mañana Theatre in Forth Worth, Texas with the children's theater program for seven years. Through her agent in the Dallas area, she segued into voice over work.

Barney & Friends[]

Patty Wirtz received a call from her Dallas agent who stated that they were casting for a new season of Barney & Friends, with a new boy dinosaur character who would appear alongside Barney and Baby Bop. Wirtz went to the ColorDynamics studio that was located in Allen, Texas to audition for the role. Wirtz was the last person to audition as she auditioned in front of Dennis DeShazer and Jim Rowley. Prior to her audition, she sent an audition cassette tape to ColorDynamics but never heard anything back. At the audition, DeShazer wanted a specific voice that was on her tape to sound like the new character.[1]

Wirtz voiced BJ from 1993 up until 2010 with a numerous amount of voice tweaks and changes.


Barney & Friends[]


  1. Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (1994, 1997, 1999-2004)
  2. Barney at Grand Ole Opry (September 16-17, 1995)
  3. Kids for Character (1996)
  4. Live with Regis and Kelly (January 23, 2006)



Behind the scenes[]


  • Prior to her casting on Barney & Friends, Wirtz had already known Julie Johnson, the voice of Baby Bop, for years as they've both worked at Casa Mañana. She has also known Bob Lavallee before as well.
  • "A Rock N Roll Star" was the most challenging song for Patty Wirtz to sing due to it's range and high energy.
  • Wirtz was meant to be interviewed for the documentary of I Love You, You Hate Me, but she had COVID‑19 when the crew was filming in Texas.[2]
  • Wirtz made a cameo in the episode "Bunches of Boxes" as a women sitting on the idea bench during the song "A Tisket, A Tasket".