PRB Piano Series: The Harmonious Blacksmith

HANDEL arr. Philip R Buttall
Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
3 minutes
Classical music
Solo instrument (Piano)
Instrumental parts
Not available

The Harmonious Blacksmith is the popular name of the final movement, Air and variations, of Handel’s Suite No 5 in E major, HWV 430, for harpsichord. The familiar air is followed by five doubles (variations in the English ’division’ style): semiquavers in the right hand; semiquavers in the left hand; semiquaver triplets in the right and left hands; and finally demisemiquavers in both hands.

My transcription addresses one or two anomalies in the original notation, adds some extra ornamentation, and seeks to provide a balance for use in an exam situtation*, where repeats are generally not encouraged, and free performance, where no such restrictions apply.

There is a short note at the end of the final variaiton, where some of the thinking behind the edition is shown.

The movement is currently a List A alternative piece in the 2015/16 Piano Syllabus at Associated Board *ABRSM) Grade 8, and can be used as such until the final session in March 2017.

page one of PRB Piano Series: The Harmonious BlacksmithASALTTEXT

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