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Sesame Street Dad: Evolution of an Actor Paperback – June 30, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The face is instantly recognizable to millions of Sesame Street viewers who have grown up with Gordon, the on air personality who has offered comfort and friendly guidance to two generations of children. Roscoe Orman, who has portrayed this beloved character for thirty-two years, is now the author of Sesame Street Dad: Evolution of an Actor.

As important as his presence on this classic children’s television program are Mr. Orman’s ongoing contributions to theater during his forty-year professional career. His acting credentials are impressive and he, along with Ossie Davis, Morgan Freeman and untold numbers of other black actors helped define Black Theater as we now know it.

A strong element of Sesame Street Dad is Orman’s belief in honing the onstage and film personification of the black male, reestablishing the concepts of honor and integrity. His appearance on Sesame Street as a trustworthy friend to children places him at the forefront of this "movement," his image being emblematic for trust, honesty and friendship for millions of Americans.

The actor continues to appear on Sesame Street and because of its favorable filming schedule is able to continue his acting career at the same time. He remains very involved with the Black Theater scene and is currently appearing in a one-man play, The Confessions of Stepin Fetchit. He has appeared in countless other plays, films, and Sesame Street outreach programs all over the United States and has just completed a short feature film entitled, Twilight’s Last Gleaming.

Sesame Street Dad features a number of photographs that profile some of the highlights from Orman’s career, many from his early years on the stage. There are also photos with a wide variety of guests from Sesame Street that include Hillary Rodham Clinton, Denzel Washington, Gregory Hines, Lily Tomlin, B.B. King, Julianne Moore, Yolanda King, Gordon Parks — the list goes on. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

A multi-faceted performer with over forty years of experience as an actor and entertainer in theater, film and television, Roscoe Orman’s career, particularly as the beloved "Gordon Robinson" on TV’s most highly acclaimed children’s program Sesame Street, has touched literally millions of people the world over. Orman studied acting at Circle In The Square Theatre School and singing at the Manhattan School of Music. An early member of the Free Southern Theater in the mid-1960s, he toured throughout the South for two years and was also a founding member of Harlem, New York’s famed New Lafayette Theatre from 1967 to 1972. As an award-winning theater actor, he has performed in over 50 productions on the stages of Broadway, off-Broadway, regional, and repertory theaters across the country.

Orman made his film debut in the title role of Universal Pictures’ Willie Dynamite in 1973 and has also appeared in Follow That Bird, FX, Striking Distance, New Jersey Drive, Full Court Press, The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland, and Twilight’s Last Gleaming, his most recent film project. In addition to the multiple Emmy Award-winning Sesame Street, television audiences have seen him on such programs as Sanford and Son, Kojak, All My Children, Hard Time on Planet Earth, A Man Called Hawk, Law and Order, Cosby, and Sex and the City. A busy voice-over artist, Orman has narrated and/or hosted such documentaries as Langston Hughes: The Dreamkeeper for PBS, Heritage of the Black West for National Geographic, Lifeline for the Discovery Channel, and Images in Black and White for ESPN.

Mr. Orman has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean with his Gordon of Sesame Street concerts and with Matt Robinson’s one-character play, The Confessions of Stepin Fetchit. He is a board member at Luna Stage where he also teaches acting.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Inkwater Press; 1 edition (June 30, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592992102
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592992102
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,491,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Elevate Difference on June 30, 2007
Format: Paperback
Ever since I can remember, I have loved Sesame Street. The muppet characters entertained and educated me as a young child, and the human characters became trustworthy friends and role models. Growing up in a small Midwestern town, the only non-white people I regularly encountered were on television, and fortunately for myself and others of my generation, the residents of Sesame Street were strong, positive, gentle, and ethnically diverse.

One of these residents, Gordon Robinson, has been expertly played by Roscoe Orman for over thirty years. As Susan's husband and Miles's adoptive father, Gordon is a model of a caring, confident family man. Before reading Sesame Street Dad, I knew that I loved Gordon. What I didn't know was the incredible breadth and depth of the career of Roscoe Orman beyond Sesame Street.

Orman starts his memoirs at the beginning of his life, explaining significant events and people who led him to discover an interest in acting. This interest grew into a passion, and this passion grew into a long, varied, celebrated career. Orman's career has included an amazing array of theater, film and television performances. Beyond his contributions to the overall world of acting, his triumphs and talents have opened doors for black Americans and have contributed to equal treatment and respect for performers of all races.

Readers will enjoy getting to know Roscoe Orman intimately, and having an up-close look at the realities of being a black actor starting out in the 1960s. Candid accounts of auditions and life and work as part of a performance company opens up a world unknown to most people. Orman honestly shares his feelings, thoughts, struggles and motivation throughout the shifting and growth of his career.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. Catarella on July 5, 2007
Format: Paperback
Roscoe Orman's memoirs is a detailed account of an accomplished actor. While he is best known to most as Gordon on Sesame Street, he is an accomplished actor. It was interesting to see the "man behind Gordon". Growing up watching him on Sesame Street and now with my son, you forget that the actor's are so much more than their Sesame Street characters. It was amazing to see how many other roles he has accomplished.
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0 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Robert Proulx on February 8, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book was delivered on time and in excellent condition
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