Written by Jeff Moss
Date 1978
Publisher Festival Attractions Inc.
Backfin Music Company
First Episode 1910
Sesame Street I Don't Want to Live on the Moon

Sesame Street I Don't Want to Live on the Moon

Ernie sings "I Don't Want to Live on the Moon."

"I Don't Want to Live on the Moon" is a Sesame Street song sung by Ernie, who expresses his desire to visit the moon someday, but ultimately decides he doesn't want to live there. He also sings about wanting to travel under the sea and to a few other places, as long as he is able to return home to those he loves. Originally recorded for the 1980 album The People in Your Neighborhood, it was later made into an insert during season 15.

In season 25, a new version was shot as a duet between Ernie and Aaron Neville. Jim Henson's original vocal recording was mixed with Neville's recording, giving the impression that Jim Henson was still performing three years after he died. This version was directed by Jon Stone[1] and includes three clips from the original. (First: Episode 3242)

Ernie once again sang this song, with Shawn Colvin, in the 1998 special Elmopalooza. A portion of Ernie's vocals were removed in the album release.

Bob, Rosita, and Telly Monster sang this song in Episode 4031 of Sesame Street.

An all new version of this song performed by Steve Whitmire and combined with Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star can be found in the Sesame Street Live presentation of Super Grover! Ready for Action.

Bob McGrath also sang this with Christopher Cerf on piano at a panel discussion at the Brooklyn Public Library on November 21, 2009.

The song was also released as a book, I Don't Want to Live on the Moon.

The tune was used as underscore in "One World, One Sky: Big Bird's Adventure" when Elmo and Hu Hu Zhu express their interest in returning home from their imaginary trip to the Moon.

A cover version performed by Ernie with Lennon & Maisy was released online in October 2016 as a part of the "Love to Learn" campaign. The video was directed by Marilyn Agrelo and features animated characters produced by Mochimochi Land with animation by Maureen Boyle.

Internationally, the song has been covered on Plaza Sésamo by Barón Púrpura (YouTube) and the melody of the song was used for a lullaby by Shams on the 2015 revival of Iftah Ya Simsim. (YouTube)


Sesame Street Aaron Neville And Ernie Sing Don't Want To Live On The Moon

Sesame Street Aaron Neville And Ernie Sing Don't Want To Live On The Moon

Aaron Neville and Ernie's version of the song.

  • The original segment was a rare instance where Ernie is seen in full-body puppet form. It took three puppeteers to perform Ernie: Jim Henson performed Ernie's head and left hand, while another puppeteer worked Ernie's right hand, and another puppeteer operated Ernie's feet. This example of bunraku-style puppetry is one of the frequent uses of the chroma key technique.


Audio (original version)
Audio (Aaron Neville version)
Audio (Shawn Colvin version)
Video (original version)
Video (Shawn Colvin version)

See also


  1. The Muppet Mindset: Interview with Muppeteer Pam Arciero
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