Giving a Voice to Puppeted Walk-Around Characters

Beaudry Interactive, LLCUnited States
2023 People’s Choice Award
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Voting closes at 23:59 EST (EST time: UTC-5) on 5 May 2023.


Production / Professional


David Beaudry (Beaudry Interactive. Lead Developer) Tim Pike (Beaudry Interactive. Systems Design) Clint Brinker (SeaWorld. Corporate Project Manager) Diane Benedict (dbProductions and Former VP of Entertainment. Sesame Place Philadelphia. Content producer) Michelle Kreher (Sesame Workshop).


One of the hallmarks of a theme park is getting to meet your favorite characters in real life. Guests are excited to meet and take pictures with the characters, however the experience is left a little empty without any verbal exchange. It can be frustrating for the younger guests who know the character can talk, and extremely limiting for visually impaired guests who rely primarily on sound and touch when meeting others. And guests expect to hear the authentic voice of their favorite character, a voice that often only one performer can provide.

In collaboration with Sesame Workshop and SeaWorld, Beaudry Interactive’s innovative performer-based gesture and show control technology has given one of the world’s most beloved children’s characters, Big Bird, a voice at the brand-new Sesame Place San Diego. The patent-pending technology allows puppeted, walk-around characters to talk to and interact with guests using the authentic voices of each character. Through gestures designed to be simple and natural to Big Bird’s mannerisms, the performer can cue and trigger pre-recorded sound bites in the moment that are relevant and conversational. Performers don’t have to follow a prescribed cue list. With all of the required equipment embedded in the costume or on the performer, Big Bird is able to freely walk around and interact with guests anywhere in the park untethered. Wireless signals give Big Bird the ability to interact with the surrounding environment, including fun exchanges with Oscar the Grouch, creating a truly dynamic and immersive environment.


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