A medley of mewsicians from around the world makes up Leopold von Kittenkat's orcatstra, but where is his baton?
Page by page and quatrain by quatrain the Meowstro queries each of his instrumentalists, but when the baton doesn’t appear, the versatile conductor finds another way. The Disney background of both author and illustrator is evident in this slight but amusing story, their first picture book. But Fantasia was never like this. In Lanzisero’s whimsical illustrations, the players, all cats, have names and costumes that reflect national stereotypes: Swiss Miss Gabriele fiddles in a laced top and dirndl skirt; Taj, the Indian pungi-player, sports a Sikh turban; Sven, the Swedish trombonist, wears a Viking helmet. The musical instruments of this curious orchestra are surprising, too. Besides the traditional violin, oboe, trombone and harp, they include such oddities as bagpipes, a taiko drum, a didgeridoo and a concertina. All the instruments mentioned, as well as other musical words used, such as virtuoso and oompah-pah, are defined in a concluding glossary. The verse includes wordplay and rhymes that will make readers smile, but the beat is irregular; those who read this aloud may want to practice.
Silly but fun, with a smidgen of information, too. (Picture book. 5-8)