72-Year-Old Janice Burgess, Creator of ‘The Backyardigans,’ Has Passed Away

Janice Burgess, the creative genius behind the cherished show ‘The Backyardigans,’ is being mourned by the world of animation and children’s entertainment.

Janice Burgess, a beloved figure in the world of animation, has sadly passed away at the age of 72, leaving behind a lasting legacy that has touched the hearts of viewers of all ages. The news of Burgess’s passing was confirmed by Fracaswell Hyman, an animation writer and dear friend of Burgess, who took to social media to pay a heartfelt tribute. Reflecting on their early years working together, Hyman fondly recalled how their professional relationship quickly evolved into a deep friendship. Burgess, who served as the Executive in Charge of Production, impressed Hyman with her sharp wit, impeccable style, and unwavering support. In a touching post, Hyman wrote, “Janice was not only a talented professional but also a dear friend. Her vibrant spirit and unwavering passion for her work will be deeply missed.”

Janice entered the scene with her sharp sense of humor, elegant Hermes scarves, and a constant cigarette in hand. Rather than being just a supervisor, she became a true friend. She saw my talent even before I did and ensured that I was always in the running for various shows, such as LITTLE BILL and TAINA. Janice was the mastermind behind the creation of THE BACKYARDIGANS and provided invaluable guidance for numerous other Nickelodeon, Sesame Workshop, Disney, and Apple TV shows. Her feedback on scripts and stories was perceptive, clear, and helpful – and I’m incredibly grateful for that.

Janice, Maria Perez-Brown, and I had a wonderful time developing shows together. We shared many laughs and had great conversations. It is with a heavy heart that I say goodbye to my dear friend. May she rest in peace.

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‘The Backyardigans’ was a beloved children’s animated series that originally aired on Nickelodeon. This delightful show revolved around the escapades of five vibrant animal friends, namely Uniqua, Pablo, Tyrone, Tasha, and Austin. Through the power of their imaginations, these adorable characters embarked on thrilling adventures right in their own backyard. Every episode was filled with captivating original music and enchanting dance routines, taking the characters on imaginative journeys to various locations and even different time periods. ‘The Backyardigans’ not only entertained young viewers but also fostered creativity, teamwork, and problem-solving skills. It quickly became a cherished and educational staple in countless households.

After hearing about her death, numerous fans have turned to social media to express their condolences. One fan shared on Twitter, “Rest in peace, Queen Janice Burgess. Thank you for ‘The Backyardigans’ – that intro goes hard!” Another fan remembered, “Janice Burgess, the talented creator of ‘The Backyardigans,’ has passed away. She brought immense joy to the world. May she rest in paradise, Queen.” A third fan added, “We say goodbye to Janice Burgess, the remarkable mind behind ‘The Backyardigans.’ No one could have achieved what you did. You will be deeply missed.”

Janice Burgess is being fondly remembered by people for her remarkable contributions to the world of animation. However, it is not just her professional achievements that are being celebrated, but also the kindness, mentorship, and friendship she extended to everyone fortunate enough to have known her. The impact of her storytelling magic will continue to resonate in the hearts of fans and colleagues alike.

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