New children’s picture book for upcoming performers

Curtain Up! A Book For Young Performers, a children’s picture book by Dirk Mclean with colourful illustrations by France Brassard has been published by Tundra Books in Toronto and Tundra Books of Northern New York.

Written by an author with extensive first hand theatre experience, Curtain Up! is a must-have resource for young performers.

In Curtain Up!, a fiction picture book, Amaya has been chosen for the lead role in what will be her first professional play. Although she has acted before, she’s about to learn how much team effort and hard work is involved in putting on a show. Through Amaya’s journey, readers will experience the audition process, the many rehearsals, the costume fittings, the memory work and the thrill of performance.

Writer-actor McLean was born in Trinidad & Tobago. His autobiographical radio drama, The House on Hermitage Road, was produced by the CBC and subsequently published. McLean’s previous children’s books have garnered starred critical reviews: Steel Drums and Ice Skates (Groundwood Books) and Play Mas’! A Carnival ABC (Tundra Books), with promotions at Book Expo America, American Library Association, Book Expo Canada, bookstores and libraries. McLean’s writing also extends to plays, screenplays and memoir ghostwriting. He lives in Toronto.

Illustrator Brassard has been fascinated by illustration since she received a tiny picture book in a Christmas stocking when she was a child. After studying both interior and graphic design, she became an illustrator in the 1990s. Brassard now has several books to her credit including Lily and the Mixed-Up Letters by Deborah Hodge and If I Had a Dog by Carolyn Jackson. She lives in Quebec.

“(Brassard) gives Amaya, who looks biracial, distinctive features and an appropriately big personality. McLean, an experienced actor, does tuck a case of stage fright and a few tricks for memorizing lines and the like into his brief, upbeat narrative.”- Kirkus Reviews, August 2010

Copies of Curtain Up! are available in local bookstores from September 14.

Can. $19.99 / U.S. $17.95. Hardcover with Poster Jacket. 40 pages for children aged six to eight. Full colour.

ISBN: 978-0-88776-899-6

Canadian Distributor: Random House of Canada 1-888-523-9292

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