Sesame Street has cut long-running characters Bob, Gordon and Luis.
The children’s show said Thursday that actor Bob McGrath, 84, part of the original cast in 1969, and Emilio Delgado, 76, who plays Luis the handyman, will no longer appear on the show.
Both last performed in episodes taped in 2013.
Roscoe Orman, 72, who has played original character Gordon since 1974, has filmed new appearances for the current season of the show, but will not appear on the show after that.
Beginning this year, Sesame Street is airing on HBO as well as on PBS.
McGrath, said at an event earlier this month that since the move to HBO ‘they let all of the original cast members go’, USA Today reported.
McGrath announced at the Florida Supercon earlier this month that major changes were afoot on Sesame Street.
‘They let all of the original cast members go, with the exception of Alan Muraoka — who is probably 20 years younger than the rest of us — and Chris Knowings, who is also young,’ McGrath said at the event.
‘As of this season, I have completed my 45th season this year. And the show has gone under a major turn around, going from an hour to a half-hour.’
A statement that was posted to the Sesame Street Twitter on Thursday confirmed that Bob the music teacher, Gordon the science teacher and Luis the handyman had been axed.
However the statement said the three will ‘continue to represent us at public events’.
‘Bob McGrath, Emilio Delgado (‘Luis’) and Roscoe Orman (‘Gordon’) remain a beloved part of the Sesame family and continue to represent us at public events,’ the statement read.
‘To us, and for millions of people worldwide, they are a treasured part of Sesame Street. Since the show began, we are constantly evolving our content and curriculum, and hence, our characters, to meet the educational needs of children.
Official statement: This message about the changes was posted to the Sesame Street Twitter on Thursday
‘As a result of this, our cast has changed over the years, though you can still expect to see many of them in upcoming productions.
‘As we’ve stated previously, Sesame Workshop retains sole creative control over the show. HBO does not oversee the production.’
Delgado joined Sesame Street as Fix-It Shop owner Luis in 1971.
Orman replaced Matt Robinson as kind schoolteacher Gordon in 1974.
McGrath has been with the show since it premiered in 1969.
A spokeswoman for the show made clear that HBO has nothing to do with the production of the show.