Biography

Roscoe Orman has been known to millions for his thirty-five years as 'Gordon' on PBS-TV's highly acclaimed children's series Sesame Street, where he has become a symbol of fatherhood to an entire generation. Born and raised in the Bronx, Orman began his acting studies at the Circle In The Square Theatre School with Michael Kahn. Since making his professional debut with the Next Stage Theatre Company's 1962 production of If We Grow Up, he has achieved a long and distinguished list of theatre credits. 

Orman has hosted many child related events, including national telethons for the prevention of both child abuse and violence among children as well as the Children's Defense Fund's Stand For Children and New York City's Kid's Day events. He has toured extensively with his Gordon of Sesame Street concerts, as a keynote speaker and with Matt Robinson's highly acclaimed one man play The Confessions of Stepin Fetchit. 

As a writer, Orman has penned many poems and was contributing editor of Black Theatre Magazine during the 1970s. Orman's memoir, Sesame Street Dad: Evolution of an Actor was published in June 2006.

His children's book Ricky & Mobo which he wrote and illustrated was published in 2007. In 2008 he was named "Chief Storyteller" and national spokesperson for Audible Kids, the nation's leading provider of digitally downloaded children's literature. 

As an early member of the Free Southern Theatre in New Orleans, Roscoe toured throughout the South for two years and served as the company's artistic director for one season. A founding member of Harlem's New Lafayette Theatre, he appeared prominently in most of that company's productions, including Whose Got His Own, We Righteous Bombers, The Duplex, The Devil Catchers and The Fabulous Miss Marie. 

Recent roles have included Troy Maxon in Fences at Madison Repertory Theatre and Hoke Colburn in the Delaware Theatre Company production of Driving Miss Daisy. As a director, Orman has staged productions of plays such as Goin' a Buffalo, Clara's Ole Man, How Do You Do, and House Party. He is a five time nominee and recipient of an Audelco Theatre Award for his performance in the 1997 production of Do Lord Remember Me at Manhattan's Sylvia and Danny Kaye Playhouse.

In 1973, Ormam made his feature film debut in the title role of Universal Pictures' Willie Dynamite. His other films include Follow That Bird, FX, Striking Distance, New Jersey Drive, Drive by, The Adventure of Elmo in Grouchland, 30 Days, and Twilight's Last Gleaming. 

In addition to the multiple award winning Sesame Street, television audiences have seen him on such programs as Sanford and Son, Kojak, All My Children, A Man Called Hawk, Law and Order, Law and Order SVU. Cosby, Sex and the City, and The Wire. 

He has narrated many documentary films, including Langston Hughes: The Dreamkeeper on PBS, Lifeline on Discovery Channel, and Hertiage of the Black West on National Geographic and audio book biographies of such luminaries as Colin Powell, Martin Luther King, Jr., Frederick Douglas, Barack Obama, and Wilt Chamberlain, to name a few.