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Wim T. Schippers

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Wim T. Schippers in 2009
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Wim T. Schippers at the Dutch premiere of The Muppets at the Tuschinski Theatre in Amsterdam.

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Wim T. Schippers performing an Albert Heijn Kermit puppet at the Dutch premire of The Muppets at the Tuschinski Theatre in Amsterdam.

Wim T. Schippers (b. 1942) dubs the voices of many lead characters on Sesamstraat, the Dutch co-production of Sesame Street, most notably Ernie and Kermit the Frog, and has also been heard in the Dutch dub of The Animal Show. Schippers is a popular Dutch comedian, best known for his particularly high voice. He is also an artist and a writer, and he hosted the Nationale wetenschapsquiz (National Science Quiz) from 1995 to 2002.

Schippers has been dubbing Ernie since the first Sesamstraat season in 1976, with Paul Haenen as Bert. The Dutch Bert and Ernie are extremely popular. Jim Henson was so impressed by Haenen and Schippers' performances that they are the only Bert and Ernie in the world who are allowed to write their own material. The duo have recorded a whole series of self-written Bert and Ernie record albums, and they also appear as Bert and Ernie in interviews.

Wim T. Schippers made a guest appearance on Sesamstraat in the 25th season, as one of the celebrities reading a bedtime story. He also hosted the 25th anniversary New Year's Eve special Sesamstraat In Paradiso.

In the 1990s, he performed Kermit (as a voiceover) in "Indoor Groceries" interviews with Tommie, who had to find three objects beginning with the same letter of the alphabet. He also supplied Ernie's voice in four sketches, in which Ernie asked Tommie to play outside, but with a shadow puppet used for Ernie's silhouette. In the beginning, Schippers' Ernie voice was an imitation of Jim Henson's Ernie. In later seasons, when the American sketches became a little more fast-paced, his voice grew a lot higher and more energetic.

In November 2008 Schippers announced in De Wereld Draait Door (a Dutch television magazine) that there will be new Bert and Ernie CDs available soon with new songs, introductions and sketches. Another CD that's in progress will be filled with duets sung by Ernie and several famous Dutch singers.

Outside of his Muppet work, Schippers has been the Dutch voice of Mickey Mouse during the 1970s and 1980s, and dubbed Happy in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. He wrote and produced Hoepla, a 1967 youth-targetted series that was the first in the Netherlands to show full nudity, causing a national controversy.

Voice Credits

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