DreamWorks Trolls The Experience Extends Run in NYC
Feld Entertainment, Inc., in partnership with Universal Brand Development (UBD), is extending the run of DreamWorks Trolls The Experience in New York City for an additional five months. Located at 218 West 57th Street, the location-based experienced brings to life the colorful and musical world of DreamWorks Trolls will now run October 22, 2018 through May 12, 2019.
Guests will be transported into the lifestyle of the DreamWorks Trolls through an interactive journey, inviting them to join Poppy’s Best Day Ever Celebration. Guided by a rainbow path, visitors will begin their journey at the Hair We Go Salon for a Trolls makeover and then will make their way to Branch’s Musical Mashup to create custom beats. After collecting floating gems in the Caterbus and stopping for interactive play at Critter Creek along the way, guests continue on an immersive adventure filled with social media moments as they make their way to the 3-D dance party at Poppy’s Best Day Ever Celebration. Guests will end their adventure in Memory Mile, where they can snap pictures and meet with Poppy before they create a scrapbook celebrating their Best Day Ever.
The ticket price includes DreamWorks Trolls collectibles, makeover accessories, temporary tattoos, 3-D glasses, a keepsake starter scrapbook, and a complimentary printed photo. After the experience concludes, guests can peruse the shop for their favorite DreamWorks Trolls souvenirs or grab sweets made by City Bakery from the Cupcakes & Rainbows café.
The live, location-based family experience is the first partnership of its kind between UBD and Feld Entertainment.
Butterbean’s Café Readies for Nick Jr. U.S. Premiere
Nickelodeon’s new CG-animated series, Butterbean’s Café, will premiere Monday, November 12, at 1 p.m. ET/PT, in the Nick Jr. preschool block.
The series (40 episodes), which centers on a fairy named Butterbean and her adventures running her neighborhood café and bakery, will feature guest voice appearances by top celebrity chefs and culinary experts: Richard Blais (Top Chef, Guy’s Grocery Games), Alton Brown (Good Eats, Iron Chef America), Carla Hall (The Chew, Top Chef), Padma Lakshmi (Top Chef), Giada De Laurentiis (Giada at Home) and Rachael Ray (The Rachael Ray Show). Created by Robert Scull and Jonny Belt (Bubble Guppies), Butterbean’s Café showcases creative cooking and features a curriculum with social-emotional lessons that highlight kindness and gratitude, and leadership skills. Following its U.S. launch, Butterbean’s Café will roll out on Nickelodeon’s international channels and branded blocks throughout 2019.
Leading up to the linear series premiere of Butterbean’s Café, a new full-length episode and short-form content are available now on NickJr.com and the Nick Jr. App.
Sesame Street‘s Caroll Spinney, Big Bird Puppeteer, to Retire
Last week, the man behind two of the more beloved Sesame Street characters, puppeteer Caroll Spinney announced his retirement from the roles of Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, which he has performed on Sesame Street since its 1969 premiere.
“Big Bird brought me so many places, opened my mind and nurtured my soul,” said Spinney. “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.”
A lifelong artist, Spinney developed a love of puppetry at an early age. He explored puppeteering throughout his childhood and adolescence, and even used money from his performances to pay his college tuition. After serving in the Air Force, he performed as a professional puppeteer in Las Vegas and Boston in the 1950s and 1960s, eventually meeting Jim Henson at a puppetry festival in 1962. When Henson was creating the muppets of Sesame Street, Caroll’s unique combination of talent and heart proved to be perfect for the new show’s larger-than-life bird. He joined Sesame Street’s inaugural season in 1969, and he’s been performing with the show ever since.
After five decades as the heart and soul of Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch, it’s impossible to entirely separate the man from the characters he so vibrantly brought to life. Big Bird visited China with Bob Hope in 1979. He’s danced with the Rockettes, and with prima ballerina Cynthia Gregory. He’s been feted with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, celebrated with his likeness on a U.S. postage stamp, and named a “Living Legend” in 2000 by the Library of Congress. Performing Big Bird has taken Caroll to China, Japan, Australia, France, Germany, Canada, and the UK. He has performed on hundreds of episodes of television, starred as his big yellow avatar in the feature film Follow That Bird, and conducted symphony orchestras throughout the U.S., Australia, and Canada. Spinney even met his wife of 45 years, Debra, on the Sesame Street set in 1973.
In addition to his puppeteering, Spinney is also an author and visual artist. He co-authored and illustrated his autobiography, The Wisdom of Big Bird. He holds four honorary doctorates, and is a passionate lecturer. He holds a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award, six Emmys, two Gold Records and two Grammy honors. He is the 2003 recipient of the Legacy for Children Award, and The Christopher’s James Keller Award in 2004. His life and career have been documented in the 2014 film, I Am Big Bird.
Going forward, the role of Big Bird will be performed by Matt Vogel, Sesame Street’s Puppet Captain and part of its Emmy Award-winning directing team who also performs Count von Count for Sesame Street and Kermit the Frog for the Disney Muppets. Oscar the Grouch will be performed by Eric Jacobson, an Emmy-nominated puppeteer who also performs Grover, Bert, and Guy Smiley for Sesame Street, as well as Fozzie Bear and Miss Piggy for the Disney Muppets.