I just want you to imagine a four year old little girl who would sit in front of the television and talk to Mister Rogers most every day. She learned how crayons were made, what to do with the “mad that she feels”, that there are “many ways to say I love you” and most importantly, she learned that Mister Rogers liked her just the way she was.
That little girl was ME.
Because of Mister Rogers, I grew up believing how powerful television can be for preschool children. I studied child developmental psychology, like Fred did, and I wanted to create interactive, educational shows that would help kids learn, just as Mister Roger’s Neighborhood did for me. As a result of being so influenced by him, I grew up to create Blue’s Clues for Nick Jr and Super Why for PBS Kids.
And now, my life has come full circle as I get to create Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. The four year old little girl in me gets to actually play in the Neighborhood of Make Believe! Like all the preschool fans of Mister Rogers out there (Hello! Let’s keep talking!), I had a story for all of the characters from the Neighborhood of Make Believe. I just knew that Daniel Tiger grew up, got married and had a son named Daniel. And Daniel wears a little red sweater and sneakers, just like Mister Rogers did! Daniel talks to kids at home and as a shy, sweet, four year old tiger, he is curious about the world. He is also most caring, and is learning and sharing with the children at home.
Joanne Rogers, the widow of Mister Rogers, has been the one that’s caused me to hold my breath, waiting to see what she thinks of all of the work we’ve put into this passionate endeavor. Waking up this morning, in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, I read Joanne say, “I was so excited because the old feeling is there. I think Angela Santomero really captured it and I almost cried because I felt such relief. I’d been anxious not knowing what to expect, but, oh, Daniel is just so cute. I can’t imagine everybody won’t love him, and I’m delighted…”
That four year old girl in me is singing, “It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood….” 🙂
Congratulations Angela! That’s so exciting. I can’t wait to see Daniel & all his friends.
Thank you! It’s a great bunch of people on this project & we’re all VERY excited! Perhaps that’s a bit obvious though, no?
I am a PhD Student in Early Childhood Education and an educator for 30 years and Mr. Rogers will always be my favorite early childhood educator. I wish I would have been able to meet him. I am the director of an intergenerational child care center in Manhattan and Dr. Alice Wilder was just visiting last week to try out some internet books with our preschoolers and she told us about the Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood show. The idea is brilliant. Congratulations!
Thank you for your kind mssg Karen. Mr. Rogers will always be a favorite to many…myself included 🙂
This is such welcome, wonderful news! Congratulations from a family of huge Mister Rogers fans.
We have gotten such amazing feedback for the Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood project. Thanks for the support!
I never saw it coming, but Daniel Tiger getting his own series is grand news for me. I used to watch Mister Rogers when I was a kid, as well as in my teen years for the sake of nostalgia. When this new series airs, I’d DVR it since I’d be at work by then.
Besides that, here’s hoping that Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood will be a success to a new generation of preschoolers, as well as all the people who grew up watching Mister Rogers when they were kids.
I’m so sorry about the delay getting back to you. How rude of me!
Thank you so much for your kind words. The preschoolers are happily eating “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” up with a spoon as we speak. Hopefully it’ll positively affect them as the “Neighborhood” affected you & I.
Thanks for reaching out 🙂
Is so proud to be a part of this great show by voiceing the character of Katarina Kitty.
Amariah, you’re doing an amazing job as the voice of Katarina Kitty in Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. We are all so very excited for the it’s debut in September ’12!!
Hi i have autism & im 14 years old & i would 2 no something from u real quick. Ok u no that show blue’s clues u created back in 1996 & in ur studio u would always use the red chair. I was wondering where u got it from cause all i no is that its a 90’s chair 4 1 but would love 2 no the real answer if u dont care & on the last episode of blue’s clues called gold clues im also would 2 no where u got the golden chair cause i would no that the gol,d 1 would not be around but i no u still have ur red 1 (obsiouly) so if u could reply back 2 me plz,thank u & it was very nice 2 meet u (through the internet of coure lol) god bless u!
Thanks for your comment Grayson. You sound VERY smart!
I have some very talented people that work with me to alter ordinary things into magical creations. And when we use those items for my shows, we further enhance them through computer (& a little pixie) magic to take it a few steps further. Great question!
It was nice to “meet” you too. Keep watching & growing that big brain of yours Grayson!
Thank you for honoring Fred Rogers memory in such a sweet way! I have a 1 year old baby who loves Daniel Tiger and a 13 year old who turns it on for her and can’t resist singing along… ” Ride Along”. It’s genious! How incredibly adorable. Fred would be proud!
That makes me so happy Amanda. I’m glad your family is enjoying the show..even your 13 yr old..What a great big bro/sis!!
Fred’s an amazing person & we’re so lucky he was able to affect so many of us, in our own personal ways. I appreciate your kind words & am looking forward to hearing what your smarties at home will be bringing to the world as well! Have a great week.
Hello Angela, I have a question for you or your character artists. My grandkids love the program! I’m knitting a Daniel sweater as a grandchild’s birthday gift. Needless to say, she is having a Daniel the Tiger birthday party. I have purchased the official trolley patch to make the sweater as realistic as possible. I have been watching episodes to figure out the type of pockets on Daniel’s red hoodie sweater. Are they “patch” (sewn on top of the sweater), like the Daniel the Tiger trademarked plush toy wears, or “slash” pockets (only the slash shows on the outside of sweater and the pocket is hidden inside the garment, typical of most sweatshirts)? I know this sounds picky, but with the hours of work required for the project I’d like to get it right.
Thanks so much! and keep singing!
Hello Grandma Sue. That’s so very nice of you.
It’s actually both: the top of the pocket is shinier patch, but the rest of the pocket is hidden inside.
There’s a good shot on this post: http://angelasclues.com/daniel-tigers-neighborhood-renewed/