NAMM, The International Music Products Association, "Music Makes Us a Family" Float to Join 116th Annual Rose Parade

October 20, 2004

NAMM, the International Music Products Association, will participate for the second time in Pasadena’s famed annual Tournament of Roses Parade. The association’s 2005 float, themed “Music Makes Us A Family,” features Big Bird, Elmo, Oscar, Cookie Monster, Bert, Ernie, Zoe, Rosita and Honker from Sesame Street who will deliver the float’s joyful “families making music” theme. In addition, this will be one of the first interactive floats in Rose Parade history with a live drum circle in which everyone on the parade route can participate.

A three-generation music-making family from Phoenix, Ariz., will add to the excitement that day as they ride the parade route on the NAMM float. Sixty-one-year-old grandmother Barbara Miller, her daughter, Ellen Miller and two grandsons, Carl Cohen (11) and Ben Cohen (7), will join in celebrating family with music. Grandma Miller plays oboe, Ellen Miller plays flute, while Carl plays the saxophone and Ben plays drums.

The NAMM “Music Makes Us A Family” float will bring attention to the importance of music making for people of all ages. A recent Gallup survey revealed that 82 percent of respondents agree that music brings the family together.

More than 6,000 man-hours will go into the construction of the NAMM float. Everyone is welcome to join this musical family from one of the most famous addresses in the world, “123 Sesame Street.” At the front of this colorful float Elmo leads enthusiastic drummers who bring music to life. Sitting at the piano, Big Bird gets a little help from the most recognized green grouch, Oscar, who joins in on the maraca. All are singing, playing, learning and celebrating the fact that “Music Makes Us a Family.”

Big Bird is decorated with individual feathers, cut from pampas grass and layered with cut yellow strawflower petals. Elmo is decorated with red carnations, sweet rice and amaranthus seed. Oscar is covered with jagged sprigs of juniper.

Elmo’s drum is detailed with intricate designs done in whole peanuts, pecans and caltrope. Braided raffia cord is used to create the lacing on the drum. The piano is covered in cornhusks; individually ironed and cut to shape. The colorful stylized bouquets include roses, red ginger, liatris and carnations. The flowers are accented with vibrant stacks of oranges, apples, limes and grapefruit.

Last year, NAMM’s first-time entry with partner Sesame Workshop won the Isabella Coleman Award for Color and Color Harmony Through Floral Use.

The International Music Products Association, commonly called NAMM, is the not-for-profit association that unifies, leads and strengthens the $16 billion global musical instruments and products industry. NAMM’s activities and programs are designed to promote music making to people of all ages.

Sesame Workshop is a nonprofit educational organization making a meaningful difference in children’s lives around the world. Sesame Street Music Works encourages children, their parents, grandparents and all caregivers to be involved with music.

The Rose Parade will take place on Saturday, January 1, 2005.

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