Judy Freudberg, who died on Monday at the age of 63, worked at Sesame Street for nearly forty years - from 1971 to 2010. She began as a production assistant, then became a Sesame writer in 1975, going on to write countless Muppet sketches, Sesame's anniversary special 20 And Still Counting and many segments of "Elmo's World", of which she was head writer.
Outside of the Muppets, she and Tony Geiss co-wrote the Steven Spielberg animated movies A Land Before Time and An American Tail.
In August 2010, I interviewed Freudberg for the biography I'm writing of her Sesame Street colleague, Muppet performer Richard Hunt. We sat down at a Greek diner near Manhattan's Columbus Circle. She looked classy and casual, cheerful and quick to laugh. She had a Peter Pan youthfulness despite having just turned 60.
Please visit my blog for excerpts from our talk.