The independent London newspaper

The importance of the Blue Plaque

17 September, 2021

Muppets creator Jim Henson and Kermit [Alan Light Wikimedia Commons]

• A LOT about getting Blue Plaques in the September 9 New Journal. I am happy to hear that Jim Henson got one on one of his London homes.

When I was a dance student in New York in the 1970s, with a badly injured ankle, Kermit Love would constantly invite me into the Sesame Street studios on Broadway around West Eighty-Third street.

Kermit had designed Big Bird and the Snuffleupagus. And he also designed the Don Quixote costumes for the New York City Ballet.

So while watching all the video takes of Sesame Street I was sewing a costume along with choreographer James Waring who was another friend of Kermit.

The atmosphere was always fun yet professional. Of course, the puppeteers were relieved to take off those hot, heavy, costumes and occasionally complained when the scene had to be repeated many times for those huge video cameras.

At times Jim Henson would come gliding past me, always friendly and always calm. Everyone who worked for him said he was a great boss. And in the following years the business grew exponentially.

Decades later, walking down Oval Road in Camden I saw “The Henson” on the front of a renovated building and wondered if that had anything to do with the Muppets. Of course, Jim Henson’s story became clear later on to me.

My mother, Hilde Holger, who taught modern dance and pioneered inclusive dance for learning disabled young people, taught for over 50 years in Oval Road.

The CNJ wrote an article about people who did not get the Blue Plaque on May 18 2008. On September 22 it will be exactly 20 years that Hilde Holger died.

It would be great if there could be another Blue Plaque in the same northern end of Oval Road.

Oval Road, NW1


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