- For the 1973 album, see Sesame Street LIVE!
Sesame Street Live! is the live touring show based on Sesame Street. Produced by Minneapolis-based VStar Entertainment Group (formerly VEE Corporation), the show opened on September 17, 1980, with a production of A Sesame Street Mystery: The Case of the Missing Rara Avis playing at the Met Center in Bloomington, Minnesota. Palmetto-based Feld Entertainment took over, beginning in October 2017.
Sesame Street Live is now produced as three or four separate tours, each performing a different show, with its own plot, characters, scenery, and soundtrack. Shows are performed in arenas and theaters around the world, generally working on an eight to ten month touring schedule ending in the spring and resuming in the late summer. While in the United States, Sesame Street Live is a bus and truck show, with the equipment moving by two or three trucks and the personnel travelling by bus. (This is contrasted with a show that travels by rail, such as the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.) Outside of the US, air cargo and sea containers are used. The title El Show de Barrio Sésamo is used when the show is performed to a Spanish soundtrack, produced by Zoo Partners Entertainment and Mamut Events S.L.; it is performed to a Portuguese track as Rua Sésamo ao Vivo.
The shows feature original music scores and songs, complemented with old favorites from the show, and professional dancers as costumed characters performing the parts of the Muppets. The productions are done in a theatrical style. In an arena, a stage is built and a false proscenium is created to make the experience more similar to going to a theater.
The official website for the shows is located at sesamestreetlive.com. The site, produced and maintained by the VEE Corporation, features a list of the currently touring shows, tour dates, storylines, character bios, tips for parents and caregivers, news information on auditioning, and links to other Sesame Street and VEE sites. The show also has an official Facebook fan page with regular updates and information on the touring shows.
In 2009, the company launched their 100th tour. The Mayor of Minneapolis proclaimed January 13, 2010 Sesame Street Live Day, in honor of VEE's 30th anniversary. New York City made a temporary street renaming for the 30th anniversary of the tour on February 4, 2010 when the intersection of 31st Street and 8th Avenue was the site of a celebration of the touring production.
- 1980 - A Sesame Street Mystery: The Case of the Missing Rara Avis
- 1981 - Big Bird's Super Spectacular Totally Amateur Show
- 1982 - Sesame Jamboree
- 1983 - Around the World
- 1985 - Save Our Street
- 1986 - Big Bird Goes Hollywood
- 1987 - Big Bird and the ABCs
- 1988 - Big Bird's Sesame Street Story
- 1989 - Silly Dancing
- 1990 - Sleeping Birdie
- 1990 - Let's Play School
- 1992 - Where's the Birdie?
- 1993 - When I Grow Up
- 1994 - Let's Be Friends
- 1996 - 1-2-3 Imagine!
- 1997 - Elmo's Coloring Book
- 1999 - Big Bird's Sunny Day Camp Out
- 2001 - Everyone Makes Music
- 2003 - Out of This World
- 2005 - Super Grover! Ready for Action
- 2006 - Elmo Makes Music
- 2007 - When Elmo Grows Up
- 2008 - Elmo! Ready for Action
- 2008 - Elmo's Green Thumb
- 2009 - 1-2-3 Imagine! with Elmo & Friends
- 2010 - Elmo's Healthy Heroes!
- 2012 - Can't Stop Singing
- 2013 - Make a New Friend
- 2014 - Let's Dance!
- 2017 - Let's Party!
- 2018 - Make Your Magic
There have also been "mini-shows," which have toured in Singapore in 1997 and 1999. The 1997 show was held in Centerpoint shopping complex and featured Big Bird, Elmo, Ernie and Bert. The 1999 show was held in Great World City mall and featured Elmo, Cookie Monster, Ernie and Bert.
- Each tour travels nearly 20,000 miles in a given season, the equivalent of crossing the country six times. The average distance between cities is 350 miles.
- All of the characters’ shoes are made of latex and cast in large plaster molds. Bert and Ernie wear size 15 shoes.
- Abby Cadabby’s skirt has 50 individual fabric panels and 100 sequins.
- Zoe’s tutu consists of 15 yards of fabric stitched in seven separate layers.
- Ernie’s sweater is knit from 2.2 pounds of cotton yarn — equal to nearly one mile of yarn.
- In addition to the traveling crew, 10 to 15 local stagehands are hired in each city to unload, setup, run and tear down the show
- On average, the entire show is setup (“load-in”) in seven to eight hours. Following the last performance, everything is loaded back into the trailers (“load-out”) in three to four hours.
- Performers range in height from 4 feet 10 inches to 6 feet 2 inches, as Sesame Street Live Muppets range in height from 5 feet (Elmo) to 8 feet 2 inches (Big Bird).
- Big Bird is made from 4,000 custom-dyed turkey feathers. Each feather is individually hand sewn to a piece of yellow organdy fabric before being attached to the costume.
- A typical tour includes 28 people: 17 performers, eight crew members, a company manager, an assistant company manager and a performance director.
- Sesame Street Live discography
- Sesame Street Live performers
- Sesame Street Live Playset
- Sesame Street Live plush (Snap Creative)
- Bobby Tanzilo, ""Sesame Street Live" celebrates 100 with "1-2-3"", OnMilwaukee, Nov. 26, 2009.
- Diana Nollen, "Growing green: Sesame Street Live planting seeds of eco-awareness", The Gazette, May 3, 2010