Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Granny Bird

Granny Bird

Written by Jarrod Fairclough

GRANNY BIRD

Performed by…
Caroll Spinney

Granny BirdFirst appearance…
The Sesame Street Dictionary (1980)

Most recent appearance…
Here For Each Other online videos (2014)

Best known role…
Big Bird’s Grandmother

Real Estate Portfolio…
12 Forest Road, deep in the woods.  She also owns a beach house.

WHO IS GRANNY BIRD?
Granny Bird is the grandmother of Big Bird, and is very similar to him in looks and voice. A spare Big Bird puppet is used for Granny, with her lines often being pre-recorded by Caroll Spinney so that he can perform as Big Bird in the scene.  Granny Bird has appeared many times on Sesame Street visiting her grandson from her home in the deep woods. But Granny has made most of her appearances in literary form, appearing in over 25 Sesame Street books between 1980 and 2007.

Big Bird is often very excited for his Granny’s visits, preparing various things in anticipation.  In one episode Big Bird and Alan spend the day in Hoopers Store making bird seed cookies for her arrival.  Another episode revolves around Big Bird’s disappointment that Granny would be unable to visit, only to become mad at her when she does arrive for disappointing him.  Granny calms him down and assures him that she will always love him, no matter where she is.

Granny Bird appeared in the 1998 special ‘Elmopalooza’ during the Kenny Loggin’s song ‘One Small Voice’, showing her support in the talent show.  She made a couple of brief appearances in the spin off Sesame Beginnings, dropping baby Big Bird off with his Aunt Nani.

WHY DOES SESAME STREET NEED GRANNY BIRD?
Granny Bird is one of the few seen family members of the core Sesame Street characters. She exhibits the loving bond between a child and their grandparent, and is always there for Big Bird, no matter what he needs.  She is full of sage advice and wisdom, and she makes the best bird seed cookies (don’t tell Alan).

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