There are three new openings on Sesame Street.
The longrunning children’s show is set to let go of three of its longtime senior cast members, E! News has confirmed. The stars departing the series are Bob McGrath, who had been with the show since it premiered in 1969, as well as Emilio Delgado and Roscoe Orman. (Delgado joined the series in 1971, while Orman made his debut in 1974.
“Bob McGrath, Emilio Delgado (‘Luis’) and Roscoe Orman (‘Gordon’) remain a beloved part of the Sesame family and continue to represent us at public events,” a representative for Sesame Workshop said in a statement provided to E! News. “To us, and for millions of people worldwide, they are a treasured part of Sesame Street. Since the show began, we are constantly evolving our content and curriculum, and hence, our characters, to meet the educational needs of children. As a result of this, our cast has changed over the years, though you can still expect to see many of them in upcoming productions. As we’ve stated previously, Sesame Workshop retains sole creative control over the show. HBO does not oversee the production.”
News of the stars’ departures was announced by McGrath himself during a July 2 Q&A event at the Florida Supercon, with TheMuppetCast podcast first reporting his statements.
“As of this season, I have completed my 45th season this year. And the show has gone under a major turnaround, going from an hour to a half hour,” the longtime star said. “HBO has gotten involved also. And they let all of the original cast members go, with the exception of Alan Muraoka—who is probably 20 years younger than the rest of us—and Chris Knowings, who is also young.”
In a surprising move, HBO announced last summer it would air the next five seasons of Sesame Street on the cable network’s multiple channels, HBO Go, HBO On Demand and HBO Now before heading to PBS, with new episodes premiering in the fall of 2015.
“Our new partnership with HBO represents a true winning public-private partnership model,”Jeffrey D. Dunn, CEO of Sesame Workshop, said in a statement at the time. “It provides Sesame Workshop with the critical funding it needs to be able to continue production ofSesame Street and secure its nonprofit mission of helping kids grow smarter, stronger and kinder; it gives HBO exclusive pay cable and SVOD access to the nation’s most important and historic educational programming; and it allows Sesame Street to continue to air on PBS and reach all children, as it has for the past 45 years.”