In the spring of 1939 Dmitry Shostakovich stated that "Now I am writing music for the short cartoon film The Tale of the Foolish Little Mouse after Marshak. (...) I have already completed the keyboard version of the work and am now concluding the score. It is with great pleasure that I am working on this composition. It is my first experience of film music for children. I would like the experience to be a success and for children to approve of my work.
"The music of this film consists of a nursery rhyme sung by a mouse, a duck, a pig, a toad, a horse, a pike and a cat. This song varies depending on the nature of the character singing it. The music is merry and lyrical." (Music for Film: Composer's Notes // Literary Gazette. 10 April 1939).