Watch Elmo, Big Bird and Cookie Monster take over NPR

All together now: What’s the concert (what’s the concert?), the concert of the daaaay? The concert of the day is... “Sesame Street” at the Tiny Desk.

The “Sesame Street” gang injected color and new life into NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concert series on Monday when they performed a six-song show in honor of the children’s program’s 50th anniversary.

Kicking off with a countdown by none other than Count von Count — and interrupted on several occasions by Cookie Monster and his urgent cookie impulses — the Muppets played a 15-minute show at National Public Radio’s headquarters in Washington, D.C. It began with the program’s iconic theme song, “Sunny Days,” led by Elmo, Rosita, Bert, Ernie, Abby, Big Bird and Cookie Monster.


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The blue monster Grover next led “People in Your Neighborhood,” with cameos from the concert musicians, an NPR reporter and “All Songs Considered” host and producer Bob Boilen, who helms the recurring series. He even gets razzed by Grover and winds up singing a few lines about his job.

At the 12-minute mark, the gang breaks into a medley of memorable show tunes, including “Rubber Duckie,” “C Is for Cookie” and a counting song, which has previously been performed by Electric Company and a cappella group Pentatonix.

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The concert series is beloved for giving superstar musicians an intimate setting to strip down their songs into bare-bones live performances. This go-around made it even more kid-friendly and interactive. With 11 Grammy Awards and 192 Emmys, the “Sesame Street” performers have won more major awards than any other group that has played the Tiny Desk, Boilen said.

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