The familiar strains of “I love you, you love me” will echo for many years to come if executive producer Karen Barnes has her way. Barnes sees a limitless future for the sappy reptile.
“I’m a firm believer that if you can imagine it, it will happen, so this fits for me, this job,” Wendt said.
Wendt and Stinson work so closely together that they can engage in impromptu conversation with a visitor – as Barney – without missing a beat.
“You don’t want to continue doing the same things over and over. You want to keep it fresh,” said Barnes, in her second year with the program. “I think a show that’s been on this long, it’s important that we add new elements.”
Harms says on her Web page that “the kids on Barney & Friends would follow him off a cliff, if he sang a snappy song.”
The new season that kicks off today adds a new splash of color, a tiny orange hadrosaur named Riff. The pint-sized cousin of Barney’s pals BJ and Baby Bop loves music, showing his enjoyment when his crest blinks with colorful light.
Barney, the sugary sweet dinosaur loved by toddlers, is back for another season on public television, where he has been singing and dancing for 14 years.
Barnes, who once worked for the Jim Henson Co., said criticism comes with the territory when you’ve been around as long as Barney has.
Inside, carpenters hammer away on set designs, elaborate props are constructed, voices and sounds are recorded and dance routines are rehearsed. The child actors who perform with Barney even have their own classroom and teacher.
He's big, he's purple and he's not going anywhere. Barney, the sugary sweet dinosaur loved by toddlers, is back for another season on public television, where he has been singing and dancing for 14 years.
When Barneys NY opened the elegant revolving doors of its 10-story French limestone flagship store at 660 Madison Avenue in 1993, it established a retail landmark that soon came to be synonymous with a certain kind of New York style.
Barneys is not the only brick-and-mortar store having trouble. In the last year, Lord & Taylor has closed its historic New York location; so has Henri Bendel. Saks Fifth Avenue opened a woman’s outpost near the World Trade Center, then closed it fairly quickly. In April, Coresight Research revealed that retailers had already announced plans to close 5,994 stores this year — more than in all of 2018. And Calvin Klein, which since 1995 has occupied the corner on Madison and East 60th Street, just down the street from Barneys, said it would be vacating the building this spring.
“It’s crazy to double the rent; half of Madison Avenue is empty,” said Peter Marino, the architect who designed the Madison Avenue store, suggesting that if Barneys left, it was unlikely to be replaced as a tenant by another store.
The trigger for Barneys’ ills was an arbiter’s decision last August that the annual rent on the Madison Avenue store — the largest new specialty shop to be built in New York since the Depression and the source of approximately one-third of Barneys revenue — could be raised to $30 million from $16 million, creating untenable pressure on the retailer’s balance sheet.
Amid the uncertainty, which has unsettled the New York fashion world, some of the brands that have sold their products to Barneys have stopped fulfilling new orders.
As a result, Hilldun has stopped approving orders in the last two weeks. “We are waiting for them to present us with a plan so we can move forward,” he said.
In 2001, Isetan cut its ties with Barneys by selling the buildings in Beverly Hills, Chicago and New York to Ashkenazy Acquisition Corporation for $180 million. At that time, a 20-year lease was negotiated for the Madison Avenue building that set the annual rent at $16 million, with a clause stating that when it came up for renewal, it could be raised to a fair market value. Ashkenazy had asked for $60 million.
Barneys has hired financial and legal advisers, including the law firm Kirkland & Ellis, the consultancy MII Partners and the investment bank Houlihan Lokey, to help it consider its options, according to two people briefed on the matter who spoke on condition of anonymity because no decision had been made. The possibilities for Barneys include filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, renegotiating leases — not just of its Madison Avenue flagship, but potentially of other branches in its 22-store network — and taking on a strategic investor that can inject new capital.
Now, that store is fighting for its future and reputation in a fraught retail environment ravaged by skyrocketing rents and the growth of e-commerce, where former shopping thoroughfares are spotted with empty storefronts and the very premise of the department store is being questioned.
The landmark retailer, facing steep rent increases, is exploring filing for bankruptcy, along with renegotiating leases or taking on a strategic investor.