In 1969, Jim Henson unleashed an army of furry creatures onto a New York street with one aim â€“ to prove that television could be used to entertain and educate â€“ and by gum they did it!
Spanning five decades, Sesame Street has entertained two, maybe three, generations of children and attracted celebrities such as Hilary Clinton, Michael Jackson and David Beckham to come and share the fun with adorable characters such as Elmo, Big Bird and Bert & Ernie.
Forty years on, Sesame Street is still a firm favourite amongst children and parents alike – and it’s damn funny to boot.
So in celebration of Sesame Streetâ€™s 40th anniversary we thought it was time to find out whatever happened to some of the classic cast members that entertained and educated us without us even realising it.
Linda Bove – “Linda”
Linda the Librarian joined the cast of Sesame Street in 1971 and became a regular cast member in 1977.
Boveâ€™s participation in the street was prolific because she is deaf and introduced sign language to thousands of children over three decades.
Sesame Street wasnâ€™t Boveâ€™s only foray into television – she starred in an episode of Happy Days as the Fonzâ€™ girlfriend Allison and in soap opera Search for Tomorrow.
In 1991 she founded with her husband DeafWest, a resident sign-language theatre whichprovides stage productions and creative opportunities to the hearing-impaired communityin LA.
Linda departed the Sesame Street in 2003 after a 32 year run, giving her the title of the longest running role for a deaf person in television history.
Linda still continues her work in the deaf community.
Emilio Delgado – “Luis”
The first human addition to the cast in 1971, Emilio Delgado aka â€˜Luisâ€™ runs the Fix-It shop on Sesame Street and teaches viewers about Hispanic culture and language.
Specialising in toaster repair, Luis is a great handyman who has had many celebrities over the past forty years dropping off their toasters for repair, including Robert Redford and Robert DeNiro.
Luis also has an on-screen relationship with another Sesame Street member, Maria. The pair began dating in 1988 and got married soon after. They even had a daughter Gabi who arrived a year later. Awww.
After an admirable thirty-eight years, Emilio can claim without a doubt to have held the longest running part for a Mexican-American actor on a television series.Â Ever.
Emilio is still a cast member today but has also dabbled in television drama appearing in Law & Order, Hawaii Five-O, Quincy and Law & Order: Criminal Intent.
Sonia Manzano- “Maria”
Sonia Manzano is another Sesame Street veteran.
Joining the cast in 1974 as teenager Maria, she quickly became a lovable and popular member of the street.
Growing up on the street, the audience watched her change from girl to woman on the show and itâ€™s also where she found her love Luis.
As mentioned, the two characters got married and had a daughter. Now Maria and Luis run the Fix-It shop.
Manzano eventually started writing for Sesame Street and has to date earned herself a whopping 15 Emmy Awards for it! Manzano continues to engage children in Sesame Street.
Away from the street Sonia has performed on stage in the Vagina Monologues and The Exonerated and like more of our â€˜Where Are They Nowâ€™ elite, appeared in Law & Order.
She has also written childrens books and for an award winning childrens television series Little Bill.
She lives in New York City with her husband Richard, and their daughter Gabriela.