Houston Grand Opera and HGOco announce the launch of The Armadillo’s Dream, a children’s book authored by HGOco Touring Programs Manager Dennis Arrowsmith. This is HGO’s first-ever commissioned storybook, with underwriting by the Connie Kwan-Wong Foundation and CKW Luxe.
HGOco is the arm of HGO that explores making opera relevant to its changing audience by connecting the company with the Houston community through collaboration. The Armadillo’s Dream is available in hardback to the public starting Nov. 5 and can be purchased on the HGO website.
Through poetry and whimsical illustrations by Eduard Hakobyan, The Armadillo’s Dream tells the story of Sandy, an armadillo whose fondest wish is to sing onstage with Houston Grand Opera at the Wortham Theater Center. Arrowsmith, who adapted his story from a Bolivian folk tale, describes it as a “sweet story about the power of determination and resilience. I hope readers are moved and inspired by the armadillo’s journey.” Although Arrowsmith has written lyrics to songs in the past, this is his first book.
Sandy lives on Houston’s Buffalo Bayou and dreams of singing. It is his passion.Though discouraged by the creatures he meets, including a cricket, a frog, and some birds, Sandy is magically transformed during a violent storm. Soon after, his shell is discovered and proves to be the perfect musical instrument for scenes in Houston Grand Opera‘s production of The Pearl Fishers, which is coming to the Wortham Theater Center in January 2019.
The Armadillo’s Dream will become one of HGOco’s five opera-themed storybooks for Storybook Opera, where a singing storyteller brings a picture book to life for students in pre-K through second grade. It is available in English and in a Spanish translation by Alejandro Magallón. The book is a perfect addition to holiday gift lists for young children.
For more information about HGOco and its programs, please visit houstongrandopera.org/community-programs.
Photo caption: Dennis Arrowsmith of HGOco, part of Houston Grand Opera, is the author of The Armadillo’s Dream, a children’s storybook commissioned by HGO and underwritten by the Connie Kwan-Wong Foundation. Photo courtesy Houston Grand Opera.