“Sesame Street” is getting a new Latino flavor.
The popular children television program is adding ‘Armando,’ a colorful character who is a writer and bilingual, the show announced on "Good Morning America."
PBS, the network that runs “Sesame Street” made the announcement Friday morning. Armando is set to make his big debut Sept. 16, during “Sesame Street’s” 44th season.
Mando will joining the rest of the “Sesame Street” neighbors including Cookie Monster, Elmo, Bert and Ernie. He also joins a "Sesame Street's" growing Latino characters like Luis (voiced by Emilio Delgado)and Maria (voiced by Sonia Manzano). They made their debut in 1971 and 1993, respectively.
Ismael Cruz Cordova will play Mando, a young Latino writer who interacts with the puppets and also loves technology, according to The Associated Press. The actor is from Puerto Rico and graduated from New York University’s Tish School of the Arts and has made cameos in shows like “The Good Wife.”
Cordova told the Associated Press he learned to speak English by watching "Sesame Street."
“Sesame Street” went on an intense search last year to search for an actor that would serve as the voice for a new Latino character. Since hundreds of hopefuls applied, Cordova said he was “honestly still in shock” after he found out he was the man for the job, according to ABC News.
“I am incredibly proud to be a part of a show that acknowledges and celebrates diversity so whole-heartedly and am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to represent Latino-Americans on ‘Sesame Street,” he told ABC.
“Sesame Street” has made national headlines recently as the company faced scrutiny when Puppeteer Kevin Clash, who played the beloved Elmo character on "Sesame Street," resigned in the wake of an allegation that he had sex with an underage teens.