Mazzarino performing Murray on location.

Joey Mazzarino performing Murray Monster.


Joseph "Joey" Mazzarino (b. June 4, 1968) started as a puppeteer on Sesame Street in 1989 and then began writing for the series in Season 23 (1991). He wrote his first sketch, the Columbo parody "Colambo," as an audition piece, and soon found himself cast in the title role. Mazzarino served as the show's head writer from seasons 40 to 46. By Season 38, Mazzarino was directing as well.

With an inclination toward ad-libbing and a reputation as a cut-up on set, Mazzarino became a prominent player in the Sesame Street cast. His recurring characters have included Murray Monster, Stinky the Stinkweed, Papa Bear, and the boisterous, tutu-wearing Elephant. In 2001, he took over the left head of the Two-Headed Monster.

Mazzarino has won multiple Daytime Emmy Awards with the Sesame Street writing and directing teams, and he received his first nomination for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series in 2010. He shared the honor that year with frequent winner Kevin Clash, and he was nominated in the category for three more consecutive years ending in 2015.

Mazzarino's writing credits include Bear in the Big Blue House and the non-Muppet series The Upside Down Show and Sheep in the Big City (which was created by former Sesame Street writer Mo Willems, and for which he also did voice-overs). He also co-wrote the screenplays for The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland, Muppets from Space and Kermit's Swamp Years.

Mazzarino is married to actress Kerry Butler who has appeared on Sesame Street as Ms. Camp, the letter carrier. They have a daughter named Segi, who was the inspiration for the song "I Love My Hair."

In September 2015, Mazzarino announced on his Facebook page that he had left his position on Sesame Street; season 46 had been recorded prior to his departure. He since worked on the Jim Henson Company production, Julie's Greenroom, as a writer and director. Mazzarino also participated in the 2018 Puppets for Puppetry event honoring Caroll Spinney, performing a Muppet version of Bozo the Clown.

Performing Credits

Writing Credits

"Niblet's Wand," "Pinocchio Process," "Colonial Trolliamsberg," "Say Gezundenshniffle"

Sesame Street episodes

Sesame Street episodes written by Mazzarino include:[2]

Voice-over Acting


  1. Jennifer V. Hughes, "Sesame Street Live comes to Izod Center", The North Jersey Record, September 30, 2010.
  2. episode scripts

External links

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