Friday, May 22, 2020

The Show Must Go On! Corduroy Takes A Bow by Viola Baker

Lisa held Corduroy tight as they walked up the steps.

She had never been to a big theater like this before. Neither had Corduroy.

The big lobby was all a-bustle with ticket-takers and ushers handing out programs, all lit by golden glowing chandeliers hanging from the ceiling. Lisa and Corduroy look around with excitement. And then the chandeliers blinked off and on.
"That means the play will start in a few minutes. We should find our seats!" said Lisa's mother.

The play was about Mother Goose rhymes and Lisa couldn't wait. But when a big man sat down right in front of her, blocking her view of the stage, Lisa's mother quickly folded their coats into a cushion and when Lisa stood up so Mom could put it in her seat--Corduroy slid to the floor under the seat in front of Lisa without notice.

But Corduroy is one resourceful bear. He wandered under the seats down to the orchestra pit in front of the stage, right as the curtain was about go up, and climbed on the tallest thing around--a big kettledrum! A stagehand spotted Corduroy and deftly snatched him up quickly from behind the curtain and tossed him in among the props. Corduroy landed in a basket in the branches of a fake tree and suddenly found himself being trundled onstage, as the actress playing Mother Goose began to sing "Rock-a-Bye Baby." Corduroy realized that his basket was that rocking cradle.
Corduroy gets dizzy!

But that's SHOW BIZ! The bough duly broke and down it did fall, Corduroy and all. The show must go on, so "Mother Goose" grabbed up Corduroy and together the two of them take that bow as the curtain came down.

That's SHOW BIZ, and Corduroy is the star of the show, in Viola Baker's new title, Corduroy Takes a Bow (Viking Books, 2018), a welcome return of that wandering toy bear in his green overalls, illustrated with loving care in the patched-pocket style of beloved author-illustrator Don Freeman. It seems that youngsters can't get enough of Corduroy, a bear after their own minds whose curiosity leads him into irresistible adventures. Best read aloud after kids are familiar with Freeman's originals, Corduroy and A Pocket for Corduroy. "A delightful new act for ever-curious Corduroy—and an entertaining introduction to the theater." says Booklist.



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