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Muppeteer Fran Brill's official retirement

Discussion in 'Henson People' started by cahuenga, Oct 2, 2014.

  1. LamangoNumber2

    LamangoNumber2 Well-Known Member

    Welp, this is a sad day. She'll be missed, obviously. But I hope she is happy with all the knowledge her orange monster and pink lady gave to the world.
  2. Cookie Chris

    Cookie Chris Well-Known Member

    I just found out the news today, and very disheartened by it since it's following Jerry Nelson's death, Kevin Clash's retirement, and cutbacks on the Sesame Street staff. Somehow, it's kind of coincides with Zoe's lesser appearances on Sesame Street in the past couple of seasons. Prairie Dawn, for all I know, has been phased out. I always considered Fran Brill one of the core Sesame Street Muppet performers, and providing a much-needed female presence in the Muppets since Jane Henson retired during the mid 1960s (though she did a brief stint on The Muppet Show) and being a female performer when puppetry was mostly done by men. So, I congratulate her for 45 years of service to entertaining the young and young at heart through the Muppets, and I wish her a safe and happy retirement. (I just might send her an email thanking her.) I also take this time to reflect on Caroll Spinney, who is truly the last of the initial lineup of Muppet performers who worked on Sesame Street since its inception outside of Frank Oz (whom I'm not sure is still filming segments as of late outside of what's usually said that he performs one or two skits a year).
    MikaelaMuppet likes this.
  3. fozzieisfunny

    fozzieisfunny Well-Known Member

    Wait, you know Fran Brill's email address? If so, please give it to me! I would be SOO happy!
  4. Cookie Chris

    Cookie Chris Well-Known Member

    Her email address is listed on her home page under the Contact information tab: http://franbrill.com/contact-information
  5. WalterLinz

    WalterLinz Well-Known Member

    I will miss this brilliant lady who had the ability to perform Prairie and Zoe in her career that lasted over 40 years.

    I wish her good luck for her future during the many years to come.:)
  6. CBPuppets

    CBPuppets Well-Known Member

    She was a great performer, and she will always be a legend along with Jim Henson, Frank Oz, Caroll Spinney, and Jerry Nelson
  7. antsamthompson9

    antsamthompson9 Well-Known Member

    What Muppet Wiki says sums up our thoughts: Despite regular appearances throughout the 1990s and 2000s, Prairie's role on the show has been greatly diminished since season 39, appearing in very little new material outside of a few live appearances. Prairie spoke her first line on the show since 2008 in a season 44 episode. Prairie said at New York Comic Con, in the time she was gone, she was in a box. Prairie actually was a main character in the Monster Manners DVD and she's in a sketch this season. So Prairie is in fact coming back.
  8. fuzzygobo

    fuzzygobo Well-Known Member

    Five years ago, Fran admitted Sesame had become a part/part/part/part/part time job for her. If your total amount of labor is about six weeks out of the whole year (if that), retirement doesn't seem like that big of a step. Yes, she'll be missed, but she's certainly entitled to enjoy a leisurely pace.

    She paid her dues in the early days. Once she recalled being Frank's right hand ( for Cookie,probably). With Frank being about 6'4", and Fran being barely five feet, she had shoes with special platform soles made to bring her up to Frank's height. Frank used to love swinging Cookie around, and it was all Fran could do to keep up with him, stay in shot, and not trip over her shoes.

    All in a day's work.
    cjd874 likes this.
  9. Muppet Master

    Muppet Master Well-Known Member

    Ya, it is bizarre, none of the sketches that will be used from seasons before this one had Steve performing anything? Even when Jim could not perform anymore due to older sketches being replayed he was still credited for a good 10 years or so, it seems strange that not one sketch has Steve performing in it, and obviously Steve is not retired, because he would probably say it, and we would know about it, also he just performed Kermit for America's Got Talent like a few weeks ago, so at least he is not retired from the muppets if he is in the first place.
  10. LamangoNumber2

    LamangoNumber2 Well-Known Member

    Woah woah, who said Prairie was being phased out? She's been around since she was introduced. Only time she was 'phased out' is when Fran was trying different characters like Wanda and Roxie, only to settle with Zoe.

    This is just a reminder. Carol maybe retireing soon, he wants to stay until Sesame Street hits Fifty years old, bless him. Martin P. has since taken up the slack much like Steve Whitmire. It just really, really sucks some of the big Puppeteers are either gone from this plane or retired.
  11. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    When Caroll said he plans on retire until after Season 50? For years, he's pretty much been saying that he plans on sticking with SST as long as he can keep holding up Big Bird's head.
    MikaelaMuppet likes this.
  12. MikaelaMuppet

    MikaelaMuppet Well-Known Member

    It's very sad. What are we going to do without Prairie Dawn and Zoe?
  13. antsamthompson9

    antsamthompson9 Well-Known Member

    There's no doubt that Stephanie would make a great Prairie. But what about Jen Barnhart taking over for Zoe? Zoe's voice is kinda low and I think Jen can pull it off. What do you think?
    cahuenga likes this.
  14. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    Who is Jen Barnhart? I don't think I know her at all.
  15. D'Snowth

    D'Snowth Well-Known Member

    Is she even still performing?
  16. Oscarfan

    Oscarfan Well-Known Member

    Sometimes, not as often.
  17. antsamthompson9

    antsamthompson9 Well-Known Member

    That's partly why I want Jen to be Zoe. So she could be more involved.
    dwayne1115 likes this.
  18. dwayne1115

    dwayne1115 Well-Known Member

    You know I was thinking about Fran today and I had this thought. We guys have a lot of male role models we can look up to in the world of puppetry, both within the Muppets and beyond, but for women there just are not that many. So to me Fran is a pioneer for women in the art of Puppetry. Yes I know that Jane Henson did a lot of work in the early years of the Muppets, but Fran has stayed and had truly help shape Sesame Street into what it is today.
    So Fran if you ever read this, if I where a woman you would defiantly be a role model to me!
    WalterLinz likes this.
  19. antsamthompson9

    antsamthompson9 Well-Known Member

    Let me elaborate: Prairie's last major speaking appearance was this 2008 episode: . After that Prairie didn't talk at all until this 2013 episode: http://www.sesamestreet.org/videos?video=9c57ade5-3af3-4953-9c52-63e02a19a873. She didn't talk since then. However she's a main character on this DVD: .
    cahuenga and MikaelaMuppet like this.
  20. LipsGF4Life

    LipsGF4Life Well-Known Member

    To be honest, I'm gonna miss her playing Delores and Vicki
    LaniArianna likes this.

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