big bird

Lawrence Jackson/White House/Sipa USA

After Playing Big Bird For 49 Years Caroll Spinney Is Retiring

October 17, 2018

Famous puppeteer Caroll Spinney who has played Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on ''Sesame Street'' will officially retire and leave the show this week after 49 years.  He has been Big Bird since 1969 when the popular kid's show first aired.  

84 year old Spinney will voice the famous characters one more time on Thursday before he leaves. 

“Big Bird brought me so many places, opened my mind and nurtured my soul,” Spinney said. “And I plan to be an ambassador for Sesame Workshop for many years to come. After all, we’re a family! But now it’s time for two performers that I have worked with and respected — and actually hand-picked for the guardianship of Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch — to take my alter-egos into their hands and continue to give them life.”

“Before I came to Sesame Street, I didn’t feel like what I was doing was very important. Big Bird helped me find my purpose,” he continued. “Even as I step down from my roles, I feel I will always be Big Bird.”

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