Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind “Sesame Street,” will address racism — and model how children can stand up to it — in The Power of We: A Sesame Street Special to stream on HBO Max and PBS Kids starting Oct. 15.
Designed as a co-viewing experience for children and families, the special will also debut on PBS stations the same day and will re-air throughout October and November on PBS stations and the PBS Kids 24/7 channel.
“‘Sesame Street’ has the ability to entertain children while explaining complex issues like no other program and equips families and caregivers with the support they need to have empathetic conversations,” Kay Wilson Stallings, EVP of creative and production at Sesame Workshop, said in a statement. “We believe that this moment calls for a direct discussion about racism to help children grasp the issues and teach them that they are never too young to be ‘upstanders’ for themselves, one another, and their communities.”
The Power of We features Elmo and Abby Cadabby, who are joined by 6-year-old Muppet Gabrielle and her cousin, 8-year-old Tamir, as they learn how to become “upstanders” to unfair treatment based on skin — or fur — color. Current and former “Sesame Street” human cast members Alan, Charlie, Chris, and Gordon take part in the special alongside celebrity and musical guests Yara Shahidi, Christopher Jackson and Andra Day. The Power of We includes two new songs, “How Do You Know?” and “Listen, Act, Unite!,” the latter written and performed by Jackson and featuring Day.
Sesame Workshop has also created a companion guide for families and caregivers to use as they discuss the special with children, available at SesameStreet.org/PowerofWe.
Shout! Kids and Sesame Workshop have set a Sept. 1 release date for Sesame Street Monster Hits: Rock & Rhyme With Elmo, available on DVD and for digital download.
Packed with over two hours of content, the release includes the full-length feature Elmo’s Music Magic as well as an exclusive Elmo poster.
On Monster Hits: Rock & Rhyme with Elmo, classic nursery rhymes are paired with favorite Sesame Street clips. For example, “Do You Know the Muffin Man” is paired with a scene in which Cookie Monster and Gonger whip up cranberry muffins on their “foodie truck.”
Currently in its 50th season, Sesame Street is the country’s longest-running children’s television program and has received more Emmy Awards than any other show in television history.
Shout! Kids is the children’s imprint of independent home entertainment distributor Shout! Factory.
Elmo’s Music Magic was originally released on DVD in 2011.
Sesame Workshop and Shout! Factory have set a Dec. 3 release date for Sesame Street: 50th Anniversary Celebration, which will be available on DVD and digital download.
The release will follow the program’s broadcast presentation on HBO Nov. 9 and PBS Nov. 17.
Sesame Street: 50th Anniversary Celebration reimagines classic segments and songs as the crew gets ready to celebrate the 50th birthday of the fictitious puppet “neighborhood.” Right before the party, the “Sesame Street” gang notices that the famous street sign has gone missing, and it is up to Elmo, Rosita, Grover, and Abby to track it down. Meanwhile, Big Bird and Snuffy plan a surprise of their own.
Hosted by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the special also feature celebrity guests such as Patton Oswalt, John Legend, and Solange Knowles.