Alphabet Adventures: O is for Opera

I recently came across a set of Little Golden Books from the mid-1960s that cover the letters of the alphabet. Most letters get their own book (S gets two), but some have to share. As much as I would have been really impressed if they had managed to make an entire book about X, I understand the practicality of this. Each book consists of poems about things that start with the featured letter, sort of like a beginner encyclopedia.

The first one that I want to share is from The Book of N-O by Jane Werner Watson and illustrated by William Dugan. Obviously, this book is one where two letters have to share. One of the poems for the letter O is about opera and operetta and I loved the performing kids in the illustration that goes with it!

Opera and Operetta

An opera is a play
where most of the words
are sung.
And orchestra plays all through it.
There is often dancing, too.
And operetta has singing.
It has an orchestra.
It often has dancing.
But part of the time people talk.
They do not sing all the time.
Many schools give operettas.
Boys and girls play the parts
and sing the songs.
They dress up in costumes.
They wear make-up.
It is called grease paint.
Other boys and girls play
in the orchestra.
Some help backstage.
Some sell tickets.
Giving an operetta means
a lot of work.
But it is fun to see one
or to take part in the work.

Jane Werner Watson, The Book of N-O

I can see why these books haven’t stayed in print for decades like many Little Golden Books have, but they are a fun collection of poems!

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