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Meet the Man Behind Sesame Street’s Big Bird [Video]

A new documentary entitled “I am Big Bird” will be coming to theatres near some of you very soon, but it will also be available on iTunes. It profiles the incredible Caroll Spinney. The charming, free-spirited 81- year-old gentleman who has played Sesame Street’s hugely popular children’s character Big Bird (and also Oscar the Grouch)  for over four decades (since 1969). Spinney simply cannot bear to say goodbye to this beloved character Big Bird, the “true expression of his soul”. The 81-year-old has said he will carry on wearing his yellow feathered suit until he can wear it no more or for as long as it still “feels like fun”.

Caroll has been wined and dined by heads of state; he’s won plaudits and Emmys galore; he’s travelled the world as Big Bird; he’s met and partied with A-list stars; he’s even been given the moniker of ‘Living legend’ by the Library of Congress.

Dedication Passion and Authenticity

A pretty complex character, by most accounts. The Guardian describes him as a “loveable man child” and hugely talented puppeteer who can make characters spring to life. But above all he’s a fitting example of how dedication, passion and authenticity can get you far in life and work.

If you’re a fan of Sesame Street, watch this excellent video interview by CBC with Caroll. What is particularly striking is the juxtaposition of the iconic characters that Caroll is, with the man that few would know is the person behind these characters. Yet Caroll has never wanted to be famous; for him it has always been about the characters.


The video interview describes Caroll’s long and distinguished career in puppeteering and Sesame Street, as well as the decision to make a documentary about his life. You can watch the official trailer here.

Are you a Sesame Street fan? Does anything in this interview surprise you? Your thoughts and comments belwo please...