You might remember that during the school holidays I took the boys to see the musical and fabulously quirky Still, Awake Still! The show was largely drawn from the songs that accompany the delightful picture book I’m Still Awake, Still! by Elizabeth Honey and Sue Johnson.
To follow-up on our junior theatrical experience, I borrowed a copy of I’m Still Awake, Still! from the library and it’s been on high rotation ever since!
Oscar read it on the way home, when we got home (twice), before bed, in bed, and again when he woke up. He’s had the CD on repeat, and it’s moved from his bedroom to the lounge room, and back to his room again.
The story is about little Fiddy, who is having terrible trouble getting to sleep…
“Fiddy is small and busy and quick. And at bedtime he’s still wide awake.”
Marlo, Parlo and Nonno all try and help Fiddy out, as do a cast of favourite Australia creatures. It takes a big old bear, a few sweet lullabies and a quick trip through space to finely wear this bouncy little boy out.
I can’t decide what I love more, the story, the illustrations or the music…
The story is cosy from start to finish, and Fiddy is the cutest little protagonist on page. I’m on the look-out for a pair of rainbow pyjamas for Oscar and listening to Elizabeth narrate the story (on the CD) is very special.
The illustrations are gorgeous, made all the better for having seem a few of the originals at the Art Centre last month. You can see a small sample here at A&U’s website. I was quite amazed at how Elizabeth has managed to maintain a cheer and brightness on the page, even in the dark of night.
And then of course there is the music. The first time I listened to Goodnight My Little Darling with Oscar he went quiet and still. Even in the middle of the afternoon, Oscar seemed to respond to the lullaby. I’ll admit that it gave me goosebumps, at the sweetness of this lovely song. The tracks go on to be a mixture of calmness and funkiness. As is the case with most really enjoyable kids music, Sue’s compositions don’t ‘talk down’ to the kids. They’re jazzy and funky in their own right, not overly silly and performed with great talent.
The combination of a clever, super-cute story, fun and colourful illustrations and wonderful musical accompaniment, I’m Still Awake, Still! is the whole package. So very worth a look, particularly if you’ve got a little one who struggles a bit at bedtime.