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Jonathan Frith

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Jonathanfrith

Frith in Wow, You're a Cartoonist!.

Jonbeautiful

Jonathan Frith with the "Beautiful Day" puppet he made at age twelve at the Muppet Shop.

Folk musician, carpenter, film maker and sometimes puppeteer, Jonathan Frith (Michael K. Frith's son) was a member of the Muppet family from the age of five, when his father, Michael Frith, joined ha! Something of a "Muppet Rat," he spent countless hours playing with the puppets, hanging out in the Shop, on photo shoots and generally annoying Designers, Puppet Builders and a tall fellow named Jim Henson (who had an office upstairs).

Jonathan performed in the chorus on the albums Born to Add and Sesame Road, assisted on the Miss Piggy calendar photo shoots and puppeteered on the Fraggle Rock and Sesame Street floats (in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade). He even assisted in archiving many of Jim's original sketches before there was such a thing as a Muppet Archive!

As a wee lad of ten, Jonathan had the great honor of puppeteering a Pod Person in the way background in the Dark Crystal, who appears for approximately .05 of a second in the film. At the age of thirteen, Jonathan appeared on the first episode of Fraggle Rock as "husky kid chewing on a straw," in the very first Traveling Matt sequence. At sixteen, he performed in Wow, You're a Cartoonist! to show P.J. and Kai-Lee how a cartoonist can draw character bodies (while wearing ridiculously large 1980's spectacles), and is still waiting for those royalty checks to come pouring in.

Probably the greatest experience in his Muppet "career," was working with Jim Henson (also in Wow, You're a Cartoonist!). In a two-shot (edited live), Jim played Kermit as if he were drawing animal cartoons on a pad. Meanwhile, Jonathan, wearing a large Kermit-hand glove, drew the pictures that Kermit was supposedly drawing. This makes Jonathan Frith possibly the only person to have ever represented Kermit's extraordinary (and under-appreciated) painterly abilities.

Trivia

  • Jonathan Frith's stepmother is Kathryn Mullen, performer of Mokey Fraggle and Kira, among many others.
  • Jonathan Frith and Heather Henson attended the Rhode Island School of Design together, she graduating with distinction and he with something else (including a rather useless degree in pre-digital Film and Video).

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