Lamb Chop's Play-Along

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Lamb Chop's Play-Along!
GenreChildren's television series
Written byLan O'Kun
Bernard Rothman
Directed byMichael Watt
Stan Jacobson
Presented byShari Lewis
Opening theme"It's Lamb Chop's Play-Along!"
Ending theme"The Song That Doesn't End"
Composer(s)Bob Golden
John Rodby
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons4
No. of episodes86 (list of episodes)
Production
Production location(s)Chicago, Illinois, USA
Running time30 minutes
Production company(s)Paragon Entertainment Corporation
WTTW
DistributorNBCUniversal Television Distribution (on behalf of DreamWorks Classics)
Release
Original networkPBS
Original releaseJanuary 13, 1992 (1992-01-13) – September 22, 1995 (1995-09-22)
Chronology
Related showsThe Charlie Horse Music Pizza

Lamb Chop's Play-Along! is an American half-hour preschool children's television series that was shown on PBS in the United States from January 13, 1992 to September 22, 1995. It was created and hosted by puppeteer Shari Lewis, and featured her puppet characters Lamb Chop, Charlie Horse, and Hush Puppy.

Production[edit]

PBS commissioned the show from Shari Lewis in May 1991, and the show premiered in January 1992.[1] This marked Lewis' return to television after about 15 years (following the BBC version of The Shari Lewis Show in 1975). Lamb Chop's Play-Along was shot at the CBC Studios in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

The series honoured Lewis's father, college professor Abraham Hurwitz - "the official magician of New York City".[2]

Ellensburg Daily Record explains: "each half hour is filled with jokes, games, songs, and tricks".[3]

Philosophy[edit]

Shari Lewis said her goal for the audience is "participation, not passive observance". She said: "our goal is, don't just sit there - come play with me".[3] She wanted to "attack the shorter attention span of today's children with a fast-paced show using colorful electronic effects". She said in an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer: "I know that when children watch TV, they go into a stupor. Parents think (their children) are interested, but what they really are is [bored]".[4]

Lewis testified that making smart content for children was not that hard to produce and should be done with increasing frequency. She said that if children are challenged, they will be productive members of society.[5] She said, "I don't care if you tack a prosocial message at the end of the show. You have not done a quality show".[6]

Synopsis[edit]

Appropriately, Lamb Chop is an anthropomorphic sheep; other characters are puppets of other farm animals, including Charlie Horse and Hush Puppy.

Cast[edit]

  • Shari Lewis - Host/Lamb Chop/Hush Puppy/Charlie Horse
  • Pat Brymer - head puppeteer
  • Gord Robertson - Buster the Bus, featured puppeteer
  • Norma McKnight - additional puppetry
  • Bonnie Martin - Big Lamb Chop
  • Mark Gamez - Big Charlie Horse
Lamb Chop's playmates
  • Brian Ito
  • Amanda McAdam
  • Sabrina Sánchez
  • Emma Pollard
  • Annick Obonsawin
  • John Creery
  • Bryan Robinson
  • Ramon Choyce
  • Phillip Boutte
  • Jade Schwartz
  • Talia Gilboa
  • Darren Doran
  • Jason Guadalajara
  • Zack McLemore
  • Katie Orm
  • Toni White
  • Kevin Yee
  • Rachel Sandor-Gough
  • Zack Moses
  • Emily Harrison
  • Andrew Francis

Episodes[edit]

86 half-hour episodes produced.

Season 1 (1992)[edit]

  1. Air Charlie
  2. Stop Biting Your Nails
  3. Too Sick to Go to the Circus
  4. The Bully
  5. Hiccups
  6. Charlie's Magic Show
  7. Lamb Chop Works Out
  8. The Charlie Newspaper
  9. Robin Hoof
  10. Charlie's Toothache
  11. The Baseball Show
  12. The Planet Yzarc
  13. Maurice
  14. Charlie Horse Western
  15. Runaway
  16. The Lemonade Wars
  17. Have I Got A Girl For You
  18. Lamb Chop's Make-over
  19. The Ring
  20. Charlie Horse's Birthday
  21. Grown Up For A Day
  22. Charlie Horse For Class President
  23. Obedience School
  24. The Necklace
  25. The Chicken Show
  26. Lamb Chop's Allowance
  27. Talent-Less
  28. On Thin Ice
  29. Bigger is Better
  30. Lamb Chop: Star
  31. The Lamb Chop Show

Season 2 (1993)[edit]

  1. So Long Freddy
  2. Shari Makes a Beanstalk
  3. School Daze
  4. The Circus
  5. I'm Back!
  6. What's Your Name?
  7. Farnsworth
  8. A Cat By Any Other Name
  9. Born To Dance
  10. Super Angelo
  11. I Write The Songs
  12. United We Stand
  13. Lucky Puppy
  14. The Wallet
  15. Trading Bases
  16. The Return of Zark
  17. Fear of Biking
  18. Segnorita Lamb Chop
  19. Forget It
  20. Little Red Riding Hood
  21. Chicken Pox
  22. The Guys
  23. Get Up & Dance
  24. Trading Bases
  25. When You Grow Up
  26. Lamb Chop's Cold
  27. Musical Chopsticks
  28. Principal Swanson
  29. Gold Diggers
  30. The Story of How Baby Lamb Chop Learned to Walk
  31. Peer Pressure
  32. Toulouse La Chop
  33. Anchor Desk
  34. The Dark
  35. Lamb Chop's Lullaby

Season 3 (1994)[edit]

  1. The Horse of a Different Color
  2. Monopoly
  3. Tattletale!
  4. So Mad
  5. Lamb Chop's Pet
  6. Togetherless
  7. What A Mess
  8. Buster and Butch the Bully
  9. Busted-Up Buster
  10. Lamb Chop Practicing Violin

Season 4 (1995)[edit]

  1. Charlie Horse Tells a Lie
  2. Shari's Favorite?
  3. Lamb Chop's Art Embarrasses Charlie Horse
  4. A Yo-Yo for Hush Puppy
  5. Lamb Chop's Glasses
  6. Counting on Your Knuckles
  7. Your Mitt or Mine
  8. Fighting Fair
  9. The Job
  10. Sea Creatures

Segments[edit]

Introduced in Season 1[edit]

  • At Home with Lamb Chop
  • Comedy Barn
  • Knock! Knock!
  • A Baby Lamb Chop Story
  • Betcha
  • Riddles
  • Funny Little Poem
  • Animals from the San Diego Zoo
  • Tongue Twisters
  • Story Time
  • Sing a Little Sing-Along Song
  • Playtime With Emma
    • More Playtime With Emma

Introduced in Season 2[edit]

  • BUSter the Bus
  • Alphatoons
  • Something Unusual/Fascinating
  • A Baby Shari Lewis Story
  • A Teddy Bear Tale
  • A Baby Hush Puppy Story

Introduced in Season 3[edit]

  • Any Kid Can Draw
  • Take a Look at a Book
  • Buster's Brain Busters
  • Magic is the Thing for You
  • You Can Do It

Introduced in Season 4[edit]

Production notes[edit]

WTTW jointly distributed it with Paragon Entertainment Corporation to PBS stations across the country. The rights to the show are currently owned by Universal Television on behalf of DreamWorks Classics.

Opening and closing[edit]

Both the opening and closing songs were written by Broadway composer Norman Martin. Other songs were written by Square One TV songwriter, John Rodby. Two versions of the opening song with different lyrics have been used; one involves bouncing, the other strength. The ending theme song is "The Song That Doesn't End", as sung by the children and puppets while Lewis frantically attempts to stop them. Finally, at the end of the song, Charlie Horse returns. He then tries to get to sing the song again. But Lewis, she successfully stops him; by putting her hand over his mouth. She tells him to go away. Charlie leaves as she asks; but slams the door. He slams the door before Lewis could tell him don't.

An instrumental version of the show's theme song was used for a most recent show of Mallory Lewis and Lamb Chop.

Critical reception[edit]

The show received a rating of 8.0 based on 128 votes, at TV.com,[7] and score of 7.8/10 at IMDb based on 407 ratings.[8] Greensboro News & Record said of this show, "she (Lewis) made the sort of mischief that gave a vicarious thrill to millions of children watching at home".[9]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Recipient Result
1992 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Shari Lewis Won
1992 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Costume Design Molly Harris Campbell Nominated
1992 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Children's Series Bernard Rothman, Jon Slan, Richard Borchiver, Shari Lewis Nominated
1992 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series Bernard Rothman, Shari Lewis Nominated
1993 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Shari Lewis Won
1993 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series Shari Lewis, Ken Steele, Bernard Rothman, Mallory Tarcher, Lan O'Kunx, Aubrey Tadman Won
1993 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction Carl Gibson Nominated
1994 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Shari Lewis Won
1994 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Children's Series Richard Borchiver, Shari Lewis, Bernard Rothman, Jon Slan Nominated
1994 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series Mallory Tarcher, Ken Steele, Steve Edelman, Bernard Rothman, Lan O'Kun,
Shari Lewis, Aubrey Tadman, Tibby Rothman, Jeremy Tarcher, Michael Lyons, Kimberley Wells
Nominated
1995 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Shari Lewis Won
1995 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Pre-School Children's Series Shari Lewis, Bernard Rothman, Jon Slan, Richard Borchiver Nominated
1995 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series Bernard Rothman, Shari Lewis, Mallory Tarcher, Ken Steele, Lan O'Kun, Aubrey Tadman Nominated
1996 Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Performer in a Children's Series Shari Lewis Won
1996 Daytime Emmy Outstanding Pre-School Children's Series Jon Slan, Richard Borchiver, Shari Lewis, Bernard Rothman Nominated
1996 Daytime Emmy Outstanding Writing in a Children's Series Mallory Tarcher, Shari Lewis, Aubrey Tadman, Ken Steele, Tibby Rothman, Lan O'Kun, Bernard Rothman Nominated

Funding[edit]

Funding for this program was provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and by Viewers Like You.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Daily Union - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  2. ^ "The Daily Gazette - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Ellensburg Daily Record - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  4. ^ "Philadelphia Inquirer: Search Results". nl.newsbank.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  5. ^ "Daily Times - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  6. ^ "Star-News - Google News Archive Search". news.google.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  7. ^ TV.com. "Lamb Chop's Play-Along". TV.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  8. ^ "Lamb Chop's Play-Along". Retrieved 12 July 2018 – via www.imdb.com.
  9. ^ "Search The News & Record Archive". nl.newsbank.com. Retrieved 12 July 2018.