The Little Piano Girl

The Story of Mary Lou Williams, Jazz Legend

By Ann Ingalls; Maryann Macdonald; Giselle Potter (Illustrator)
(Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, Library Binding, 9780618959747, 32pp.)

Publication Date: January 2010

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What if you loved music more than anything? Suppose you had just learned to play the piano. Imagine that your family has to move to a new city and you have to leave your piano behind. People don’t like you in the new city because of  what you look like. How will you make yourself feel better? Mary Lou Williams, like Mozart, began playing the piano when she was four; at eight she became a professional musician. She wrote and arranged music for Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, and was one of the most powerful women in jazz. This is the story of Mary Lou's childhood in Pittsburgh, where she played the piano for anyone who would listen.

About the Author

Ann Ingalls and Maryann Macdonald are sisters and lifelong music lovers. Ann lives in Kansas City, and Maryann lives in New York. This is Ann's first book, and Maryann's twenty-second.

Praise For The Little Piano Girl

"Acknowledging Mary's long, worldwide career as an elegant, accomplished performer "in beautiful shoes," this sweet tribute neatly fills a niche in the panoply of titles about jazz greats."—Kirkus

"Potter's naive, doll-like figures, poised in their slightly tipsy, extravagantly patterned domestic settings, recall the mannered portraiture of the colonial period. With a steadily growing collection of picture books on jazz greats now available for the storytime set, it's nice to see a strong female musician take her place on the shelves."—Bulletin

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