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Little Airplane's Small Potatoes Inks Exclusive Deals With iTunes, Penguin Group

Little Airplane Productions' "Small Potatoes," the animated musical sensation that has become a Facebook phenomenon with 75% growth in 'likes' month over month, has inked exclusive deals for an original album on iTunes and a book series from Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

Press Release from Little Airplane Productions

NEW YORK, September 6, 2011 - Little Airplane Productions' "Small Potatoes," the animated musical sensation that has become a Facebook phenomenon with 75% growth in 'likes' month over month, has inked exclusive deals for an original album on iTunes and a book series from  Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

Pre-sale for the iTunes "Small Potatoes" album begins today, September 6, with the album on-sale date coming September 13.  Penguin Young Readers Group, through its Grosset & Dunlap imprint, will begin rolling out a series of 10 "Small Potatoes" book titles in early 2013.

The iTunes launch coincides with the singing spuds' U.S. TV debut. Starting today, the short-form series begins its daily run on Disney Channel's Disney Junior programming block for kids 2-7 and their families. SiriusXM Radio's Kids Place Live has been celebrating this wave of "Small Potatoes" activities with special programming.

The "Small Potatoes" album, exclusive to iTunes, is priced at $7.99 and includes 11 songs.

Song titles include:

ImaginationYou Can Be What You Want To BePlaytimeSmall Potato RockToday's The Perfect Day (Haircut)I Just Want To Be MePotato TrainA Musical ShowScienceThis Is My FamilySmall Potatoes' Mash-Up

The song Small Potatoes' Mash-Up is also available for download during the week of September 13. A Small Potatoes" Imagination video is available for free with purchase of the album or can be purchased separately.

The album is also available at iTunes stores in the U.K./EU, Canada, Japan and Mexico.

The four members of the "Small Potatoes" band are Ruby, the diva, Nate, the artist, Olaf, the caretaker, and Chip, a quirky little spud.  The band's songs cover every popular musical genre, from Motown to reggae and rock & roll.  Composers and lyricists for "Small Potatoes" include such luminaries as Jerry Bock, Tony Award winner for Best Musical and Best Composer and Lyricist of the classic "Fiddler On The Roof."  All the music for "Small Potatoes" is produced by Little Airplane's three-time Emmy Award-winning Musical Director, Jeffrey Lesser.  The series was created, directed and executive produced by Josh Selig, Founder and President, Little Airplane Productions.

"Small Potatoes" has become one of social media's hottest dishes at www.facebook.com/thesmallpotatoes.  In addition to interacting with the band members, fans of the Facebook page are invited to request their own free custom potato based on their Facebook profile picture.  These 'Photatoes' are adopted by their fans and used as avatars for all their Facebook activity.  The "Small Potatoes" Facebook page has a strong following among teens and college students as well as parents of preschoolers.

SiriusXM's Kids Place Live, channel 78, has been running a one-hour radio special titled "Small Potatoes, Deep Roots." The radio special is airing multiple times on Kids Place Live in conjunction with the Disney Junior TV launch.  An introduction to the band and its history, the radio show includes narration by the legendary British actor Malcolm McDowell who voices the role of the band's manager Lester "Loops" Koop.  An interview with Selig and Kids Place Live's "Absolutely Mindy" host Mindy Thomas is also airing in conjunction with the special.

In addition, Mindy has been awarding customized Photatoes to her listeners on air.  In conjunction with the iTunes launch, Kids Place Live is also airing a second, half-hour radio special that features a DJ introducing the iTunes songs and talking about the growing "Small Potatoes" mania sweeping the nation.

Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC) is releasing a "Small Potatoes" DVD and CD.  Due out in October in Australia only, the DVD features all 26 "Small Potatoes" episodes and the CD features all 26 songs.

"We have always believed that 'Small Potatoes' would achieve a Beatles-like following among children, teens and adults and, thanks to the internet, this appears to be happening much faster than we had anticipated," said Selig.  "Our social media campaign has exceeded our wildest dreams and now provides us with a growing, passionate and international fan base."

The short-form TV series premiered in the U.K. on CBeebies in the spring, where it took three of the top five spots on the CBeebies iPlayer during its very first week, including the #1 spot.  The series has also had successful launches on the ABC in Australia and Canal+ and Piwi in France.

Penguin Young Readers Group is one of the leading children's book publishers in the United States. The company owns a wide range of imprints and trademarks including Dial Books, Dutton, Grosset & Dunlap, Philomel, Puffin, Speak, Firebird, G. P. Putnam's Sons, Viking, Razorbill, and Frederick Warne. These imprints are home to such award-winning, New York Times- bestselling authors as Laurie Halse Anderson, Jay Asher, Judy Blume, Jan Brett, Eric Carle, Roald Dahl, Tomie dePaola, Sarah Dessen, John Green, Eric Hill, Anthony Horowitz, Brian Jacques, Mike Lupica, Richelle Mead, Richard Peck, Patricia Polacco, and dozens of other popular authors. Penguin Young Readers Group is also the proud publisher of perennial brand franchises such as The Little Engine That Could, the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys series, Peter Rabbit, Spot, the Classic Winnie the Pooh, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Strega Nona, Madeline, Mad Libs, Alex Rider, the Rangers Apprentice, Skippyjon Jones, Flower Fairies, and Pippi Longstocking, among many others. Penguin Young Readers Group is a division of Penguin Group (USA), the U.S. member of the internationally renowned Penguin Group, one of the largest English-language trade book publishers in the world. The Penguin Group is owned by Pearson plc, the international media group.

Penguin Group (USA) Inc. is the U.S. member of the internationally renowned Penguin Group.  Penguin Group (USA) is one of the leading U.S. adult and children's trade book publishers, owning a wide range of imprints and trademarks, including Viking, G. P. Putnam's Sons, The Penguin Press, Riverhead Books, Dutton, Penguin Books, Berkley Books, Gotham Books, Portfolio, New American Library, Plume, Tarcher, Philomel, Grosset & Dunlap, Puffin, Razorbill and Frederick Warne, among others. The Penguin Group (http://www.penguin.com) is part of Pearson plc, the international media company.

About Little Airplane ProductionsFounded by Josh Selig in 1999, Little Airplane Productions created and produced "The Wonder Pets!" for Nick Jr. (winner of the 2009 Japan Prize for Best Television Series), "Small Potatoes" for Disney Junior and "3rd & Bird" for Disney Junior and the BBC's CBeebies.  Additionally, Josh Selig was the Head Writer for "Little Bill" on Nick Jr.  He has received ten Emmy Awards for his writing on "Sesame Street" and was the Resident Producer of the historic Israeli/Palestinian "Sesame Street" co-production (winner of the 1998 Japan Prize).  Josh writes a weekly column for KidScreen Magazine called "Planet Preschool" which can be read at www.kidscreen.com.  Little Airplane has also launched the Little Light Foundation (www.littlelightfoundation.org).  The mission of the Little Light Foundation is to create programming that will help children around the world learn about conflict resolution and mutual respect.  For more information about Little Airplane Productions please visit www.littleairplane.com.

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