Jazz/Blues
12:23 pm
Mon January 25, 2010

The Little Piano Girl

Local author Ann Ingalls' new children's book introduces young readers to the legendary pianist Mary Lou Williams.

Kansas City, MO – If she were still alive this year, jazz pianist and composer Mary Lou Williams would be 100 years old. Williams was considered by many to be the greatest female jazz instrumentalist of all times. She spent the years between 1929 and 1941 in Kansas City, and was one of the principal architects of the Kansas City swing sound.

Local author Ann Ingalls' new children's book The Little Piano Girl tells the story of when the young Mary Lou Williams moved with her family from Atlanta to Pittsburg, PA. This is Ingalls' first published book, but she teamed up with her sister, veteran children's book author Maryann MacDonald, and illustrator Giselle Potter.

Ingalls recently spoke with KCUR's Alex Smith about The Little Piano Girl and the art of writing children's literature. Ending this piece, is a 1977 recording of one of Mary Lou Williams' signature songs, My Mama Pinned A Rose On Me.

Ann Ingalls will read from and talk about her book at the Plaza Branch of the Kansas City Public Library on Friday, January 29th at 7 pm.

This story was produced for KC Currents. To listen on your own schedule, subscribe to the KC Currents Podcast.