Toy Cookie Monster and Ernie puppets close out the show.

Sesamplein (Sesame Square) was the pilot episode for Sesamstraat, the Dutch co-production of Sesame Street.

The 35-minute pilot was produced by broadcasting organization VARA in 1974 and disappeared in the archives because broadcasters NOS and BRT joined forces to make Sesamstraat; the pilot aired for the first time on January 4th 1996 in honor of Sesamstraat's 20th anniversary, complete with commentary subtitles.

The pilot stars Ruud Jans and Saskia van Schaik, showing a little girl named Nicole Barbiers around her new neighborhood. She gets to meet the strange shopkeeper Mr. Brouwer, played by Alexander Pola, and the letter vendor, played by Adèle Bloemendaal. The street scenes were shot on location in the north of Amsterdam.

The Muppet voices are performed by Frans van Dusschoten and Ger Smit, who were famous for their voicework on the popular Dutch puppet series De Fabeltjeskrant. In the actual series, they were replaced by Paul Haenen, Wim T. Schippers and others. Frans van Dusschoten also performed the Dutch voice of Gobo Fraggle.

Most of the Muppet clips in the pilot (from 1969 and 1970) are quite scarce, and blended in with the street story: Grompie (the early Grover) lived next door to Ruud and Saskia, and even Bert and Ernie had their names displayed on a door.

There are no Dutch Muppets in the pilot. Instead, the Questor puppets of Ernie and Cookie Monster appear with the Dutch cast.

The pilot episode seems to be brought by the letter T and the number 20. The idea of 'one letter/number per episode' was dropped in Sesamstraat.


  • Sesamplein Theme (similar to original Sesame Street intro)
  • Ruud introduces Nicole to Saskia
  • Muppets: Grompie explains Near and Far
  • Cartoon: Guru counts to 20 on his fingers
  • Ruud, Saskia and Nicole walk past a TV store
  • Cartoon: T for TV
  • Ruud, Saskia and Nicole walk past Bert and Ernie's house: Nicole takes a peek inside
  • Muppets: Bert and Ernie - Am I really here?
  • Cartoon: drawing a fish
  • Nicole and Saskia look at an aquarium
  • Muppets: Octopus' Garden
  • Cartoon: T for TV
  • Mr. Brouwer sells "T" instead of tea
  • Muppets: Ernie and Cookie Monster explain fork, knife and spoon
  • The waiter in the restaurant reminds Nicole of a penguin
  • Live Action: 20 penguins slide down
  • Ruud, Saskia and Nicole find a ball dropping out of the sky
  • Cartoon: I've Got A Mind - ball
  • Song: Adèle Bloemendaal: "Letters Te Koop" (Letters For Sale)
  • Muppets: Professor Hastings and Kermit demonstrate "Parts of the Body" (part one)
  • Cartoon: Tapdancing penguin
  • Muppets: Professor Hastings and Kermit demonstrate "Parts of the Body" (part two)
  • Closing scene: Cookie Monster eats the letter vendor's letters
  • Credits (featuring Cookie Monster and Ernie puppets)



External links