Sesame Street Live
|Sesame Street Live|
|Company||VStar Entertainment Group|
|Date of premiere||17 September 1980|
|Rachel Dresner||performance director|
|[Official website Official website]|
VEE Corporation, the show opened on September 17, 1980, with a production of Sesame Street Live "Missing Bird Mystery" playing at the Met Center in Bloomington, Minnesota. Sesame Street Live is now produced as three or four separate tours, each performing a different show, with its own plot, characters, scenery, and soundtrack. Shows are performed in arenas and theatres around the world, generally working on an eight to ten month touring schedule ending in the spring and resuming in the late summer. While in the United States, Sesame Street Live is a bus and truck show, with the equipment moving by two or three trucks and the personnel travelling by bus. (This is contrasted with a show that travels by rail, such as the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus.) Outside of the United States, air cargo and sea containers are used.
Vee Corporation was started in March 1980 from an idea by founder Vincent Egan to produce a live character show just for Sesame Street. He based it on his time working for the Ice Follies which had a segment with those Muppets. Egan approached Jim Henson's company and Children's Television Workshop, who were interested. With outside funding, Vee was able to sign a licensing agreement with the Children's Television Workshop for the characters.
The first Sesame Street Live show opened in September 1980 at the Metropolitan Sports Center in Bloomington, Minnesota, for a five-day run. That show was successful. The following shows in five locations had lackluster attendance[clarification needed] costing VEE the profits made in Bloomington. Egan figured that the marketing material was confusing people in those markets as what type of show was not specified. He overhauled the script and marketing while getting his creditors to wait for payments. That Christmas, the show went on to play for four weeks at Madison Square Garden's 4,000-seat Felt Forum in New York City before an audience of 100,000 people.
VEE quickly ramped up to two different shows for the 1981 to 1982 season then added a third Australia show in 1982 to 1983. From the 1983–1984 season until the 1988–1989 season there were only two Sesame Street Live shows on tour.
On April 1, 2015, Blue Star Media, LLC purchased VEE Corporation with Egan continuing on as a consultant and later that year was renamed VStar Entertainment Group. In November 2016, Sesame Workshop announced an agreement with Feld Entertainment for a new Sesame Street Live show thus ending Vstar's arena version in July 2017. But the company continued other Sesame Street shows at various locations plus the United Service Organizations tour while still providing costumes.
In order to keep the show running annually in the same cities, new plot lines are created and rotated through the tour. Because the target audience changes as children grow up, shows are often removed from the rotation for a few years, then return with some modifications.
- Missing Bird Mystery (1980-1982, Australia 1982-1983, 1984-1986; Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong 1990-1991)
- Super Spectacular (1981-1983)
- Sesame Jamboree (1982-1984)
- Around the World (1983-1985)
- Save Our Street (1985-1987)
- Big Bird Goes to Hollywood (1986–87, 1988-1989)
- Big Bird and the ABCs (1987-1992)
- Big Bird's Sesame Street Story (1987-1988)
- Sesame Street Live (1988-1989)
- Silly Dancing (1989-1991, Britain 1992-1993)
- Sleeping Birdie (1990-1992)
- Let's Play School (1991-1992, 1995-1996)
- Where's the Birdie? (1992-1993, 1994-1995, Germany 1993-1994)
- Let's Be Friends (1994-1995)
- 1-2-3...Imagine! (1996-1997)
- Imagine... Ernie is King (1996-1997)
- Big Bird's Sunny Day Camp Out (2000)
- Elmo's Coloring Book (2005)
- Super Grover Ready for Action (2005-2006)
- "Elmo's Green Thumb"
- 1-2-3 Imagine! with Elmo & Friends (2009)
- Can’t Stop Singing (2013)
VStar Entertainment Group (2015-July 2017)
- Elmo Makes Music (2016)
- Let's Dance! (2014- 2016)
- Make a New Friend! (2014- 2016- 2017)
- location based shows, continuing beyond July 2017
- Nakashima, Rebecca (April 6, 2016). "VStar Finds New CEO". Venues Today. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
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- Weissberg, Brad (January 9, 2017). "VStar Buys Cirque Productions". Venues Today. Retrieved January 19, 2017.
- Arcayna, Nancy (May 11, 2000). "'Sesame Street's' Jodie suits dancer just fine". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- Harada, Wayne (June 17, 2005). "The gang's all here". The Honolulu Advertiser. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- Tanzilo, Bobby (November 26, 2009). "'Sesame Street Live' celebrates 100 with '1-2-3'". OnMilwaukee.com. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
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- Wiley, Shannon (October 5, 2016). "Sesame Street comes to Glen Avenue". Delmarva Daily Times. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- Abbate, Lauren (October 10, 2014). "Sesame Street Live cast member talks about high-energy performance, characters coming to Bangor". The Bangor Daily News. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- Friona-Celani, Mary (February 25, 2016). "Mom Review: 'Sesame Street Live: Let's Dance!'". The Buffalo News. Retrieved January 23, 2017.
- Kocher, Chris (December 27, 2016). "'Sesame Street' live show teaches value of friendship". Pressconnects. USA Today Network. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- Gormly, Kellie B. (January 11, 2017). "Make new friends but keep the old on Sesame Street". Tribune-Review. Trib Total Media, LLC. Retrieved January 22, 2017.