Variety has a feature on Sesame Street, which will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Daytime Emmys on August 30th. Here’s an excerpt:
[The] biggest stars on “Sesame Street” are the Muppets themselves (Henson’s trademark puppet creations) — multicolored creatures of felt and fur that collectively promote the show’s overarching message of racial and ethnic diversity.
“It’s all from Jim Henson‘s point of view,” says Kevin Clash, the puppeteer behind Elmo, likely the most famous redhead — save for Lucille Ball — in the history of American television. “He wanted a rainbow of characters to represent everyone.”
Adds [Producer Carol-Lynn] Parente, “Puppets are really great ambassadors. They open doors that are nearly impossible for other groups to open up.”
“The puppets are truly remarkable creatures,” says Sonia Manzano, who joined the cast in 1970. “Their characters are so fully formed it doesn’t take you long to get involved in their world.”