This collection of ten short little duets is dedicated to young instrumentalists who have only recently begun to find their way on the double bass and/or piano. Each piece is meant to depict a character or group of characters that a child may have encountered “once upon a time” in a bedtime story. When taken together as a suite, we can imagine a collage of events originally heard in stories but now, as they play back in the mind of some impressionable youngster, taking on new form as the fellow begins to drift off to sleep, lingering between the worlds of consciousness and dreams:
1. The Snowman, always a favourite backyard wintertime guest, wishes the child a final “good night!” as he sadly makes last minute preparations to leave for the summer.
2. After a lovely visit, the youngster’s Hippopotami friends march off awkwardly into the twilight, but not before they promise to visit once again tomorrow.
3. As the sun drops beyond the horizon, The Lion’s Roar at day’s end serves as the monarch’s confirmation of his place among the many subjects in his vast domain.
4. One last performance is presented before nightfall by the cows of the sea – their own special dance, famously known in the world of aquatic arts as the Manatee Mash.
5. The Scaredy Cat, being such a timid fellow, is not at all comfortable with the other celebrities he finds in this bedtime fantasy, and so creeps about in the shadows.
6. In the dark distance of his imaginings A Camel Caravan passes ever so slowly in the night, on its way perhaps to deliver spices and gifts to some faraway sultan.
7. Jack-in-the-Box, tired of being cooped up in his tight confines all the day long, finally pops out of his box with a “Bang!” as he heads off to bed.
8. Mr. Caterpillar, in town for on a business trip, slowly makes his way up a nearby bedpost for a late night chat before heading back to his hotel room.
9. A Lonely Scarecrow, having spent most of his life in the field, is not often comfortable in the company of a gathering, and so seeks his reassurance in the solitude of the corner of the room.
10. The last place one would care to find himself at the end of long day is on Crocodile Island, surrounded by toothy beasts snapping wildly about. Fortunately, with the final snap of the beasts’ jaws, our adventurer finally drifts off to a peaceful sleep.