Hugh Downs with Kermit the Frog and Yorick, in a February 1963 appearance.

Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Gene Shalit and friends on January 12, 1977.


Miss Piggy breaks up with Kermit on Today

Miss Piggy breaks up with Kermit, May 4 1990.


Traveling Matt and Cotterpin on Today

Katie Couric interviews Cotterpin Doozer and strangles Traveling Matt, 1993.

Katie Couric violently strangles Miss Piggy, ca. 1997.

Dumping Matt Lauer on January 1, 1998.


Rats Today

Rat crew on January 1, 1998.

Today, also known as The Today Show, is a daily morning news and talk program on NBC. Debuting in January 1952, it is also the third-longest running American television series.

The Muppets were frequent guests on Today in the early 1960s, doing local cut-ins for the show from Washington, D.C. They performed sketches from Sam and Friends; Jim Henson and Jane Nebel were also interviewed occasionally.

Decades later, the Muppets still make regular appearances on the show to promote current projects. Miss Piggy has had a particularly stormy past on the show; she seems to have a romantic history with co-host Matt Lauer, and she's had dust-ups with hosts Katie Couric and Meredith Vieira. Elmo has also had a long standing flirtation with news anchor Ann Curry.

The Muppets have also played host to the Today hosts -- Lauer, Natalie Morales and weatherman Al Roker have all appeared on Sesame Street. Willard Scott and Jane Pauley were guests on The Jim Henson Hour in episode 103, when Fozzie Bear visited the set of Today. Matt Lauer interviewed Cookie Monster on Sesame Street's Episode 4115 about the "Veggie Monster" controversy.

A number of Today personnel such as Lauer, Scott and Bryant Gumbel also contributed recipes to Miss Piggy's 1996 cookbook, In the Kitchen with Miss Piggy.



  • The Muppets appeared regularly once or twice a month in 1961 (often via satellite) which became weekly appearances by the end of 1962. Following Jim Henson's move to New York City in January 1963, the Muppets made 24 appearances on Today in the first half of the year.[1]
  • January 30, 1963 -- Jim Henson wears a coat with a removable collar during a Jack Lescoulie segment on men's fashions.[3]
  • March 8, 1963 -- "The Rulers of Tinkerdee"[4]
  • June 1963 - Kermit and Harry the Hipster observe a statue, "The Loneliness of Gahdahyu" by Giuseppe Romeo, and discuss its artistic merit. The statue of Gahdahyu eventually comes alive and flirts with them.[7]


  • April 3, 1974 -- Ernie and Bert get interviewed by Gene Shalit. Bert announces he's going to be an interviewer on the show, but Ernie informs him that he'll need a disguise so he won't be recognized on the street, so Bert dresses as Gene Shalit.[8]
  • January 12, 1977 -- Jim Henson does the Today Show for the 45th time,[9] along with Frank Oz. Kermit the Frog appears in his reporter attire to introduce the station break with Gene Shalit. After their performance of "Java", Shalit interviews Henson and Oz, who are joined briefly by Kermit the Frog and Grover; Shalit asks whether the two are rivals.
  • August 8, 1977 - Gene Shalit interviews Kermit the Frog, Fozzie Bear, and Miss Piggy, and later Jim Henson, who talks about their worldwide appeal, and Frank Oz talks about "Halfway Down the Stairs".
  • September 26, 1979 - Phil Donahue interview Dr. Dorothy Singer, co-director of Yale University's Family TV-Research Centre, and Edward Palmer, VP of Research for CTW about the effectiveness of the program. Palmer feels a study's suggestion Sesame Street causes hyperactivity is unfair; the study also looked at Mister Rogers' Neighborhood.


  • August 18, 1980[11] - Gene Shalit interviews Frank Oz.
  • July 27, 1981 - Tom Brokaw in London interviews Jim Henson and Frank Oz about their careers with the Muppets. Upcoming movie is titled "Dark Crystal" and introduces a new, different kind of creature. They say they are at a loss to comprehend Miss Piggy's popularity. They regard commercial spinoffs from the Muppets as secondary. Their emphasis is on entertainment from the heart. Segment created while Today was in Britain, covering the Royal wedding. Peter Ustinov appeared on the program later.
  • March 15, 1982 - Kermit and Jim Henson appear; Kermit sings "Bein' Green."
  • December 7, 1982 - A taped segment starts with clips of Ernie and Bert, Kermit the Frog riding a bicycle, Yoda, E.T. walking down an aisle at the premiere. It then shows behind the scenes production of Dark Crystal, and masks used in production. Producer Gary Kurtz notes that Jim Henson has been "granted artistic freedom" by the movie, and reassures viewers that while successful, the puppets will not fully replace human actors.
  • December 8, 1982 - Pretaped piece with Jim Henson discussing how the creatures were created and manipulated for the film. Producer Gary Kurtz mentions the technical issues encountered in filming.
  • December 14, 1982 - Jim Henson appears in a live interview, and discusses The Dark Crystal: its all-puppet cast, the choice of Panavision to capture detail, crediting Frank Oz for creative input, mentioning the Muppets will continue, and Kermit will not marry Miss Piggy.
  • July 10, 1984 -- Willard Scott introduces Gene Shalit's interview with Jim Henson, which starts with Henson throwing out a nod to Scott about having begun his career working with him at WRC-TV. Henson is promoting the company's new film, The Muppets Take Manhattan, which Shalit says is a refreshing break from the summer's crop of terrible movies. This launches into a discussion about violence on the screen in contemporary cinema. Later, Kermit stops in for an interview (he's even miked on his collar), and receives the usual volley of questions about the rumors concerning a marriage and on-again/off-again relationship with Miss Piggy.
  • March 16, 1986 - Director Jim Henson interviewed about Labyrinth. The in the interview, he says he loves to perform, and he is comfortable directing large films. The new movie is noted as more comical than Dark Crystal. Henson says scenes were tailored to what Bowie would do musically, and that Jennifer Connelly was exactly what he was looking for in an actress. In an interview, Connelly tells that she has gotten used to talking to "Muppets", noting each creature is believable. The segment ends with Henson, who "maintains he knows how to handle creatures in his films." Behind the scenes clips are interspliced.
  • June 25, 1986 -- Jim Henson appears to promote upcoming film Labyrinth, and reassure viewers that it is a family film.
  • June 30, 1986 -- Jennifer Connelly appears on Today to talk about her career, including newly released film Labyrinth.
  • July 1, 1986 -- Gene Shalit gives Labyrinth an unfavorable review.
  • January 27, 1987 -- Gene Shalit interviews Jim Henson about The StoryTeller.


Miss Piggy's Dinner Party on April 16, 1996.

An earless Miss Piggy promoting Moi in 1998.

  • May 4, 1990 -- Kermit and Miss Piggy appear to promote The Muppets at Walt Disney World. Tension between the two rises, reaching a boiling point when Piggy blurts out that their relationship isn't working and karate chops both Kermit and Deborah Norville. This appearance was planned as part of the short-lived "Pig of the Nineties" campaign, which was halted with the death of Jim Henson less than two weeks later. Kermit referenced the appearance when he appeared on The Arsenio Hall Show, and a clip of it was featured in a special edition of MSNBC's Time and Again.
  • October 17, 1997 -- Matt Lauer interviews Miss Piggy about her new book, Miss Piggy's Rules.
  • January 1, 1998 -- The morning after New Year's Eve, Miss Piggy breaks up with her New Year's date, Matt Lauer. Some rats appear as well, with one taking over a camera, another leading a tour of the studio for other rats, and "Weatherrat Al Rodent". (video)
  • Late 1998 -- Miss Piggy appears (earless) to promote her new perfume, Moi.



Kermit on Today as Washington for State Quarters

January 2001


The Today Show 2002 Frank Oz Piggy

Frank Oz's last known appearance as Miss Piggy on January 14, 2002.

Miss Piggy and Kermit say goodbye to departing co-host Katie Couric on May 16, 2006.

Elmo says goodbye to Couric on May 25, 2006.

Miss Piggy with Al Roker, Meredith Vieira and Matt Lauer on August 7, 2007.

Cookie Monster with Ann Curry on May 10, 2007.

  • June 12, 2001 -- Kermit and Gonzo celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Muppet Show
  • January 14, 2002 -- Kermit and Miss Piggy appear for the show's 50th anniversary celebration. This is the last known appearance of Frank Oz as Piggy.
  • May 2006 -- With the announced departure of Katie Couric, assorted celebrities tape segments offering their farewells. Miss Piggy and Kermit appear on May 16, and Piggy takes offense at Kermit's sign: "Hey Matt, want a pig?" On May 25, Elmo shows up to offer his own goodbyes, following General Norman Schwarzkopf.
  • August 14, 2006 -- Leslie Carrara-Rudolph performs Abby Cadabby in an introduction of the character to the general populus. Note: This appearance was originally scheduled for Friday, August 11th.
  • September 14, 2006 -- Miss Piggy thinks that she's the new co-host, and not Meredith Vieira. And if that wasn't enough, the poor pig also has to deal with bacon breath.
  • January 5, 2007 -- Miss Piggy pops out of the roughly four-foot-tall cake and sings "Happy Anchorversary" to Matt Lauer, in celebration of Lauer's 10th anniversary on the program.
  • February 2, 2007 -- Elmo appears to celebrate his birthday and talks about his Walk-around Bookstore Tour to promote childhood literacy
  • May 10, 2007 -- After a retrospective video looking at Ann Curry's 10 years on The Today Show, Elmo appears in a live segment from Italy wishing Ann well. The cast escort Curry to a short wall, from which Cookie Monster pops out from in behind. Cookie pulls out a plate of cookies, presents Ann with a bouquet of flowers, then calls in "Lou" to bring a case with an engraved necklace. As Ann hugs her co-hosts, Cookie starts to chow down on his cookies, before being hugged mid-eat by Ann.[13]
  • August 10, 2007 -- Elmo promotes Season 38 of Sesame Street.
  • July 29, 2008 -- Hoda Kotb and Kathie Lee Gifford talk to Kermit and Miss Piggy about the first Studio DC: Almost Live. Before the segment, Gifford apparently tried to provoke Miss Piggy, so she would react during the segment. After talking to the two about the guests, Piggy discusses her fitness regimen, shopping, and Kermit mentions he chases his food with his tongue. After discussing their relationship, Hoda asks Miss Piggy what she thinks of the fourth hour of The Today Show: "I've never watched it."[15]
  • November 27, 2008 -- The Muppets appear in a cooking segment on Thanksgiving. A Whatnot version of Al Roker is set to host the "cooking turkey" segment until a live turkey appears, explaining that they're actually doing a "cooking with a turkey" presentation. The turkey prepares a steak via a George Foreman grill, but a passing bull is shocked by what he sees, and sadly questions the steak: "Mama?!" Al happily closes the segment as the bull runs away in tears.
  • December 17, 2008 -- Miss Piggy appears to plug A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa. She reveals that she asked Santa for "one of those 25 billion dollar bailouts that the government's giving out." She explains that in the special she's furious at Kermit for canceling their vacation. Asked if she eventually forgives Kermit and gets in the holiday spirit, Piggy snaps, "Look, this is a holiday special. It has a happy ending, all right? It's okay. And plus, I could never stay mad at my Kermie. No. I like to think of him as mistletoe with webbed feet." Asked whether she's ever written a letter to Santa, Piggy says, "Oh, well, yes, of course I have. Look, I wouldn't leave any stone unturned when it comes to getting Christmas presents."[17]
  • April 2, 2009 -- Elmo appears in his green version to promote his new DVD Being Green.
  • September 8, 2009 -- Elmo and Elmo's Mom appear to promote Families Stand Together. (video)
  • November 6, 2009 -- The 40th Anniversary is discussed and Elmo, Cookie Monster and Abby appear to promote the new season. (video)
  • December 3, 2009 -- Kermit and Piggy appear. Miss Piggy is sick and sneezing, but insists it isn't swine flu. (video)


The Sesame Street Muppets on November 8, 2017

The hosts of Today with their Anything Muppet counterparts on the October 21, 2019 show.

  • May 3, 2010 -- Elmo appears to promote The Best of Elmo 2. During a promotional bumper, Elmo appears with Betty White, giving the former "Golden Girl" a kiss. Elmo also continued his longtime flirtation with Ann Curry, and talked about his new friend Memorybot.
  • August 9, 2012 -- Elmo, Grover and Abby Cadabby appear live from London to promote the 2012 Olympics event.
  • October 15, 2013 -- Brian Jay Jones, author of Jim Henson: The Biography, and Frank Oz discuss the life and work of Jim Henson. Originally scheduled on September 24 as a live interview but ultimately prepared as a longer feature with narration and interviews by Willie Geist.[18][19]
  • March 19, 2014 -- Kermit the Frog appears in the Orange Room with Tamron Hall to promote his new Twitter account. Later, Kermit and Miss Piggy chat with Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb. (link)
  • January 16, 2016 -- Ernie and Abby Cadabby appear to promote Sesame Street’s 46th season. A segment on the show's move to HBO, with interview snippets of Brown Johnson, is shown.
  • December 2, 2016 -- Miss Piggy appears to promote her Kate Spade New York collection, and #missadventure appearance with Zosia Mamet, her relationship status with Kermit, and how she's moving on by dating as many men, who are not Kermit, as possible (but not at the same time), and running into Matt Lauer's car.
  • January 5, 2017 -- "Sesame Street Takeover" - Big Bird acts as stage manager, Oscar directs, Elmo takes over camera 3, and Cookie Monster and Abby appear for an unplanned cooking segment. Grover and Rosita also appear later on. A behind-the-scenes feature on the new Elmo's World segment is shown.
  • February 13, 2017 -- Super Grover appears to help free Dean Cain and Kathie Lee from their locked dressing room. Meanwhile, Elmo and Abby Cadabby host the Today's Talk segment, and Big Bird appears to talk about the Yellow Feather Fund.
  • July 20, 2017 -- Steve Whitmire, fresh off the announcement that he was fired from performing for the Muppets, is interviewed to tell his side of the story.
  • August 4, 2017 -- Abby Cadabby and Elmo introduce Abby's new stepbrother, Rudy. (video)
  • November 8, 2017 -- Megyn Kelly visits the Sesame Street set and interviews Alan, Elmo, Zoe, Abby, Telly and the Count. Rosemarie Truglio joins Kelly in-studio, along with Big Bird, Elmo, Rosita, Cookie Monster, Abby, Bert and Ernie. (video)
  • November 8, 2018 -- A pre-recorded segment is shown featuring Today hosts Savannah Guthrie, Hoda Kotb and Dylan Dreyer bringing their children to the Sesame Street set to meet Big Bird, Elmo, Grover, Abby Cadabby and Cookie Monster. Big Bird, Elmo and Abby also appear live in-studio to talk with the hosts.
  • July 1, 2019 -- In an online exclusive video filmed at the newly renovated Sesame Place, Sonia Manzano and Alan Muraoka reflect on the impact of Sesame Street in its 50 years on the air, their roles on the show, and their favorite guest stars.
  • November 17, 2019 -- The show's Sunday Spotlight story, titled "The Power of Sesame Street," features narration and interviews by Kristen Dahlgren with Sherrie Westin, Elmo, and Abby Cadabby. (YouTube)


  • February 12, 2020 -- The cast of Sesame Street Live: Let's Party! perform in the studio to promote their run at the Hulu Theater in Madison Square Garden.
  • April 13, 2020 -- Elmo appears for a live video chat interview during the show's fourth hour program, Today with Hoda & Jenna, to promote Elmo's Playdate.




See also


External links

Wikipedia has an article related to:
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.