10 amazing times when Sesame Street went classical
6 October 2014, 15:16
Those times when the finest musicians and furriest monsters got together to share in all things classical. Expect to know your alphabet very well by the end of this one.
Yo-Yo Ma plays some jazz (with an owl)
Plácido Domingo, with a flamingo
Clearly Pavarotti and Carreras were just the warm-up: the tenor's true partner in music is his Muppet counterpart Placido Flamingo...
Andrea Bocelli's lullaby to Elmo
Who doesn't want to be sung to sleep by the dulcet tones of this star tenor? Here, Sesame Street's Elmo is lucky enough to be lulled to dreamland with "Time To Say Goodbye". Though it isn't without a little bedtime drama.
Renée Fleming teaches us how to count (via Verdi)
The flawless American diva is also in the mood for some numerical teaching: to espouse the virtues of counting from 1 to 5 she turns to "Caro Nome" from Verdi's Rigoletto. And sounds incredible.
Gustavo Dudamel and the Simón Bolívar Orchestra of Monsters
Sir James Galway teaches the alphabet
The man with the golden flute has graced this street a number of times, but our favourite comes from 1981. And it was to help teach the alphabet – you'll be happy to know that Big Bird was on hand to help out.
The Kronos Quartet plays some footie
The world-renowned foursome plays some football to describe the dynamics of the string quartet. Someone get Big Bird a viola – those Mozart quintets are gorgeous.
Joshua Bell, Telly Monster and a childhood dream
As great duets go, this is surely up there with the greats. In a rendition of "Sing After Me", Joshua Bell had the formidable Telly Monster accompanying him on Tuba. Apparently the first tune Bell learned on the violin was the Sesame Street theme – so he must have been stocked to be there.
Dame Evelyn Glennie on the bins
The world renowned percussion virtuoso is always looking for something to bang and crash. Unfortunately, Oscar the Grouch's trash cans are in the firing line – and he needs some convincing.