PRB Piano Series: La Traviata - Fantaisie Brillant

Year of composition
Sydney Smith
Difficult (Grades 7+)
9 minutes
Classical music
Solo instrument (Piano)
Instrumental parts
Not available

Although Sydney Smith (1839-1889) was born in Dorchester, which is not a long way from my home town of Plymouth, I have to say that I had never heard of him as either a composer or arranger.
When I was looking for a suitable piece to include in the exam programme of one of my students, for the Trinity Guildhall Advanced Certificate, I found that two of Sydney’s operatic arrangements were included. These are actually freely available from the Sydney Smith website, but they are PDFs of the original print, and, in many respects are hard to read and play from. The most difficult thing being that they use ’English’ fingering (+ for thumb, then 1, 2, 3 & 4 for the fingers) which can be quite confusing. I have therefore made a modern transcription, whilst keeping to the original text. Some editorial accidentals etc have been added, and I have added some extensive notes to the score.
Keith Beniston, former Chief Examiner at Trinity Guildhall has confirmed that students may play from my transcription, if they wish.
For further information, please visit the website.

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