The man who has played “Sesame Street’s” Big Bird for almost 50 years is retiring this week. The AP reports that Caroll Spinney said Thursday will be his last day on the show.
Spinney, 84, has been with the show from its beginning in 1969. He also plays Oscar the Grouch.
He’s quoted saying: “I always thought, how fortunate for me that I got to play the two best Muppets.”
“Spinney says the physical requirements of performing the characters had become difficult and he developed problems with his balance,” the AP reports. “He stopped doing the puppeteering for Big Bird in 2015 and now only provides the voices for him and Oscar.”
Spinney’s apprentice, Matt Vogel, who plays Kermit the Frog, will take over the role of Big Bird.
Here’s a short feature on Spinney from 2014, from CBC News …