Sunday, November 20, 2011

Puppet Master

If you walk out of a screening of Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey without a smile on your face, then you might want to check your pulse because you may not have a heart, or even a soul.  This delightful documentary chronicles the life of Kevin Clash who is the puppeteer inside the lovable Sesame Street character Elmo.  As a working-class teenager in Baltimore, Clash discovered his fascination with puppets in the late 1960s by watching iconic children's shows such as Sesame Street, of course, and Captain Kangaroo.  He started making his own puppets and putting on shows for his mother's day care kids, as well as local charities.  Although he was made fun of at school, his parents did not discourage him from his passion.  As a result, he ended up on a local Baltimore television show while still in high school.  That lead him to a stint on Captain Kangaroo and eventually to jobs with his idol Jim Henson and on Sesame Street.  The rest was history.  Clash's passion for his craft has taken him all over the world.  Not only has he built a great career in puppetry, but his embodiment of Elmo and other characters has enabled him to bring joy and love to countless children everywhere.  This is an awesome story of someone who followed his heart and built a longstanding career as a result.  Viva Elmo!

2 comments:

  1. Wonderful write. This sounds like the kind of documentary to watch during the holiday weekend...keeping that smile spirit bright...Laughter is good for the soul.

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  2. Yes, it is a good film for the holidays. Unfortunately, it's Atlanta for one week only.

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