With two kids, The Wiggles were responsible for our first introduction into toddler music nine years ago. Fast forward to today and it’s amazing to see our three year old jump and sing while watching the colorful quartet on the Sprout network.
After reading in a newspaper article that three of the original Wiggles would be retiring, it was bittersweet. It was awesome to score tickets, but sad that we’d be watching them perform for the last time.
I suddenly became very interested in the history of the original members. I spent considerable time on the internet researching the men responsible for bringing so much joy into our home.
What I did know was that the yellow Wiggle (Greg Page) had retired in 2006 due to health reasons. To our delight, he returned in 2012. It was perfect timing to re-introduce The Wiggles into our household. However, I wasn’t aware that Page and Anthony Field (the blue Wiggle) had originally met while studying to become pre-school teachers. As a result of their background, the group combined music and theories of child development into their television programs and live shows.
My jaw dropped upon reading that Field suffered from bouts of clinical depression. How ironic is that while bringing cheer to millions of kids around the world that he was battling his own demons? What shocked me even further was realizing that Jeff Fatt had just turned 49. Really, 49? My goodness, I was impressed to no end in all the jumping, joking, singing, and dancing they do. As our oldest put it, “They don’t look old, Mommy. They look like they’re your age”.
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The Wiggles confirmed that 2012 will be the final year of touring for Greg Page, Jeff Fatt, and Murray Cook (the yellow, purple and red Wiggles). It was cool that we were able to take the kids to watch the final concert, though I was a little torn. With The Wiggles’ departure, it hit home that my “babies” were growing up too.
I was surprised when my nine year old (who was just singing along to their dvd) asked if she could get a souvenir because it would be the last time she’d see them. Rather than thinking she was too cool to stand up and sing along to the tunes, she ran to the front of the stage (complete with her blue hat).
We knew this would be the last time we’d see the original four and it tugged at my heartstrings yet again. I was teary eyed when they had thanked the parents (while at the concert) for allowing them into our homes.
Thirty minutes before, they announced they’d be making their way up the aisle to pick up signs that the kids had brought and stated they wouldn’t have time to pose for pictures. As Cook made his way to the top rows, not only did he pose, but he stopped and chatted with the kids.
I will admit, The Wiggles annoyed me to no end years ago. But with so much history and after getting to know them better, they were like family. I will miss them and will remain a lifetime fan.