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Orman at the 2007 Texas Book Festival
|Born||Roscoe Hunter Orman
June 11, 1944
The Bronx, New York, U.S.
|Other names||Roscoe H. Orman
Roscoe H Orman
|Occupation||Actor, entertainer, writer|
|Notable work||Sesame Street|
|Height||6 ft. 0 in. (183 cm)|
|Spouse(s)||Kimberley LaMarque Orman|
Roscoe Hunter Orman (born June 11, 1944) is an American actor, comedian and writer, best known for playing Gordon Robinson, one of the central human characters on Sesame Street. Orman joined the show in 1974, becoming the third actor to play Gordon (subsequent to Matt Robinson, 1969–1972, and Hal Miller, 1972–1974). His contract was not renewed in 2016, as part of Sesame's Workshop's re-tooling for the series, but the organization did say that Orman would continue to represent them at public events. Sesame Workshop later announced that they'd try to find a way to bring him back.
Orman is also an accomplished stage, film, and television actor; children's book writer; artist; and child advocate.
While a student at New York City's High School of Art and Design, Orman made his theatrical debut in the 1962 topical revue "If We Grow Up." He was an early member of the Free Southern Theater in New Orleans for two years in the mid-1960s and a founding member of Robert Macbeth's New Lafayette Theatre in Harlem, NY, where he both acted in and directed several plays by NLT's playwright-in-residence, Ed Bullins. His many other stage appearances have included roles in "Julius Caesar" and "Coriolanus" at Joseph Papp's Public Theater, the Broadway production of August Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning play "Fences", Manhattan Theatre Club's stagings of Richard Wesley's "The Sirens", "The Last Street Play", and "The Talented Tenth", and Matt Robinson's one-man play The Confessions of Stepin Fetchit at the American Place Theatre. Orman is the recipient of two Audelco Theatre Awards and a five-time nominee.
He made his feature film debut in the title role of Universal Studios' 1974 drama Willie Dynamite and has also appeared in such films as F/X, Striking Distance, New Jersey Drive, Sesame Street Presents Follow That Bird, Twilight's Last Gleaming, The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland, and Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life. His television credits include work on such shows as All My Children, Kojak, Sanford and Son, Cosby, Sex and the City, The Wire, Law & Order, and "SVU". He has recently appeared on the Garry Trudeau/Amazon streaming production Alpha House and also the HBO mini-series, "(The Night Of)".
In June 2006, Orman's memoir Sesame Street Dad: Evolution of An Actor was released. In September 2007, his children's book Ricky and Mobo was released.
On October 8, 2008, he became the Chief Storyteller of AudibleKids.com (a service of Audible.com), a website for parents, teachers, and children to connect with one another and download and listen to audiobooks on iPods, MP3 players, and computers. In his role as Chief Storyteller, Orman narrates audiobooks and communicates with children, parents and teachers online and at community, literacy and library events, lectures and conferences, and via other media to encourage the use of audiobooks to help build an interest in reading and develop literacy skills. He commented on being Chief Storyteller on October 8, 2008: “When Sesame Street began, television was a new and even controversial medium. But we showed how that technology, if used correctly, could become a powerful learning tool...I see the same kind of opportunity emerging today as parents and educators increasingly view iPods with skepticism. With AudibleKids.com, I believe we can help turn these players into magnificent storytellers, tools for learning, and a way to promote a lifelong love of stories and language.”
His new role was announced at a community event at The Educational Alliance Boys & Girls Club in New York City, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office commended Orman’s life work and willingness to embrace new technology to help encourage children to read books, by naming October 8, 2008, AudibleKids Day in New York City.
Orman is the father of five and the grandfather of eight. His son, Miles Orman, was on Sesame Street playing Gordon and Susan's adopted son Miles Robinson from the mid-1980s into the early 1990s. He and his wife, Kimberley LaMarque Orman, reside in New Jersey.
- Chattman, Jon; Tarantino, Rich; Underhill, Brett; John Oates (2009-04-18). Sweet 'Stache: 50 Badass Mustaches and the Faces Who Sport Them. Adams Media. pp. 117–. ISBN 9781440501449. Retrieved 6 August 2012.
- Jones, Kevin L. "'Sesame Street' Lets Go Longtime Cast Members Bob, Gordon and Luis". KQED Public Media for Northern California. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
- Lujan, Adam. "Sesame Street let go three longtime cast members". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
- Interview from Wisconsin Public Television with Roscoe Orman—the actor talks about his career and experiences playing Gordon Robinson on Sesame Street.
- Roscoe Orman on IMDb
- Roscoe Orman at the TCM Movie Database
- Roscoe Orman Interview in the Archive of American Television
- Interview 'Sesame Street' star is an accidental role model - Associated Press
- Roscoe Orman Official Website