• Sheet Music Department

    February 16, 2017

    *** NEW SESSION ADDED *** FREE WORKSHOP on improvisation for pianists with Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins

    Due to the high level of interest in our free workshop on improvisation for pianists with Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins on Sunday 5 March 2017, we will now be offering the workshop twice that day.

    In addition to the previously advertised time of 2pm, the same workshop will now also be given at 11am. For full information, please see our Events page.

    Although places are no longer available for the 2pm session, registration is now open for the new 11am session: please let us know the names of everyone in your party via:

    0161 834 3281 (extension 204) or


    Places are limited so please register as soon as possible to avoid disappointment – we will not be able to add a third session!

  • Sheet Music Department

    February 11, 2017

    Valentine’s Day: La La Land, musical jewellery, and your favourite song printed by us

    Valentine’s Day is only a few days away… If you’re still wondering where to start, we’re here to help! You can reach us online, on the phone, or in person at our five-storey musical department store in the heart of Manchester.

    Here we share with you some of our top recommendations:

    - sheet music to record- and heart-breaking film La La Land;

    - a selection of musical jewellery and accessories;

    - and your favourite song, printed by us.

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    Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack

    Piano, Vocal & Guitar • £14.99

    Easy Piano • £12.99

    A rare hit with both critics and audiences, La La Land has just been nominated for 14 Oscars, equalling the record set by Titanic.

    These sheet music collections were only published a few days ago but are already among our best sellers.

    Both versions include City of Stars, as performed by Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling, and John Legend’s Start a Fire.

    Read more and buy online

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    Read more & buy online

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    Read more & buy online

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    Read more & buy online

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    Read more & buy online

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    printed by us


    Whether you want to serenade your partner or be prepared to take requests while gigging on Valentine’s Day, we can supply an enormous number of songs of all genres via our print-on-demand service:

    - blockbusters like Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing;

    - old classics like What a Little Moonlight Can Do, recorded by Billie Holiday with Teddy Wilson and his orchestra in 1935;

    - and the latest hits like Ed Sheeran’s current No. 1, Shape of You.

    Most songs are transcribed in the standard “PVG” format (Piano, Vocal & Guitar) while many are also available in versions for guitar tab, easy piano, piano duet, ukulele and various other instruments. These can be prepared in-store while you wait or ordered by telephone: 0161 834 3281, extension 204.

  • Sheet Music Department

    January 24, 2017

    FREE WORKSHOP on improvisation for pianists with Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins


    with Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins

    Hosted by Forsyth

    Sunday 5 March 2017

    2pm – 3.45pm

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    For many of us, improvisation is shrouded in mystery: either you can do it or you can’t. But like every other facet of music-making, it is simply a skill acquired and developed gradually over time with experience and guidance.

    Improvisation can be learned – and it can be taught.

    Come and find out how in our next free workshop!

    We are delighted to be hosting two of the UK’s finest practitioners in this field, Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins. Both are pianists and teachers who believe that improvisation is not a specialist activity for a few advanced musicians but an essential part of everyone’s musical development from the outset.

    Places are limited so register now to join us for this myth-busting session.

    All attendees will be eligible on the day for a 20% discount on all sheet music published by Alfred, including:

    – Andrew Higgins’s So You Want to Learn to Improvise?

    – Elena Cobb’s Improv Exercises for Classically Trained Beginners

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    Event information

    Event – Free workshop on improvisation for pianists with Elena Cobb and Andrew Higgins

    Date – Sunday 5 March 2017

    Time – 2pm–3.45pm. Two 45-minute presentations with a 15-minute break in-between:

    In the first presentation (2-2.45pm) Elena Cobb will focus on methods for pianists and their teachers up to about Grade 3.

    In the second presentation (3-3.45pm) Andrew Higgins will focus on methods for more experienced players and their teachers.

    All attendees will be registered for both presentations and are strongly encouraged to attend both! While less experienced players will find the first presentation most immediately applicable, the second will offer relevant insights into continuing to incorporate improvisation into their music-making throughout their future development. Similarly, more advanced players with little improvisatory experience will benefit from the techniques of the first presentation as much as those of the second.

    Venue – Forsyth Brothers Ltd, 126 Deansgate, Manchester M3 2GR – staff will direct you to the workshop space in the basement

    Eligibility – Open to pianists at any level, parents and teachers

    Entry – Free

    Registration – Please let us know the names of all attendees via: 0161 834 3281 (extension 204) or sheetmusic@forsyths.co.uk

    >>> READ MORE

  • Instruments

    January 16, 2017

    January Instruments Sale!

    So January has arrived, and with it the blues of the New Year. Rather than wallowing in the blues we encourage you to indulge in them by coming in store to take advantage of some of our fantastic sale offers. There really is something for everyone, and here is a selection! The full list of all instruments on sale can be found on our website, here: https://www.forsyths.co.uk/sale

    Digital pianos are becoming a more and more popular alternative to acoustic instruments, due to their lower cost, lack of maintenance needs and ever more realistic replication of the touch and sound of a real piano. Two of Kawai’s mid range digital pianos feature in our sale – the CN35 and CN25

    The CN25 features a fully weighted keyboard, ivory touch keys, grand feel pedals and Kawai’s fantastic piano samples; you’d be hard pressed to find a better instrument for under £1000, at £979. The CN35 carries all the features of its little brother, with the addition of hundreds of more voices and a two track recorder – a real steal at £1,119. For the player who requires the portability of a keyboard, but still needs the responsiveness of fully weighted keys and the brilliance of a Kawai piano sound we have the ES100 – for £489 you get a 15kg instrument with integrated lesson function, split keyboard functionality and an built in metronome and song recorder.

    For acoustic guitarists the highlight has to be the Guild Orpheum Jumbo, now only £1995 down from £3276. It combines a red spruce top and solid mahogany back and sides to project an incredibly full bodied tone, with power and clarity! Also featuring in our acoustic guitar sale is the Ortega 8 string classical – with a solid cedar top and included gig bag it’s a real bargain at £475.

    When it comes to electric guitars, Rickenbacker is a name that needs no introduction. Fortunately for fans of the electric guitar we have a whole host of Rickenbackers featuring in the January Sale – perhaps the choice model being 1993 Plus 12 String with over £1000 off, reduced to £2,650. There’s something for the bassists as well, with the Rickenbacker 4004 Laredo Bass. It’s a modern take on the classic Rick’ bass, and can be yours for only £1725.

    The ukulele has really enjoyed a resurgence in the past few years, with ukulele groups springing up all around the country. If you haven’t yet tried out this instrument, our January sale is the perfect time. Many of our Lani brand ukuleles are over a third off, so whatever size ukulele you’re after there’s an instrument for you. For example, our Lani LC-70MG Concert ukulele with solid spruce top and flamed maple back and sides can be had for only £83, down from £126.

    Perhaps there is an aspiring drummer in the family – if so, the KAT KT-1 electronic drum kit is the perfect treat, and down to £417 in the sale. It contains over 150 studio grade percussion, drum and cymbal samples and natural feeling rebound cymbal pads. Best of all it has a headphone socket so that practise won’t disturb the neighbours!

    Amplifiers are a vital component of any guitarists arsenal; luckily we have a few brilliant models in our January Sale! The two we most recommend are the Vox AV-30 and AV-60 - distinctly British all-valve combo amps with a twin channel design providing a normal and top boost tone. You can pick up the AV-30 for just £275, and the AV-60 for £375. On top of this the AV-60 comes with a free VFS5 foot controller worth £57!

  • Sheet Music

    December 30, 2016

    Minim Finds a French Horn

    We at Forsyth are most excited to stock the enchanting ‘tail’ of Minim Finds a French Horn by Jacqui Blore and beautifully illustrated by Mar Van de Kaa.

    Minim Mouse has a wonderful adventure in the story where she meets all the instruments of the orchestra and helps to tidy up all the biscuit crumbs after the tea break.

    Minim Mouse is on Facebook, so you can keep up with her adventures by adding her as a friend and follow her on twitter

    The book is available here.

  • Sheet Music Department

    December 20, 2016

    Give them an orchestra for Christmas! – Music Minus One

    Nothing beats playing with other live musicians, whether it’s bashing through a new piece with friends either side of a meal or rehearsing more seriously for a performance. But for many of us it’s not possible to meet up as regularly as we would like with a pianist, let alone a band or orchestra.

    The Music Minus One (MMO) series enables us to sing or play jazz standards or classical songs, sonatas and concertos with professional musicians whenever we want. MMO publications provide:

    - a printed solo part,

    - a recorded accompaniment,

    - and most also include a demonstration recording, complete with a distinguished soloist,

    - as well as useful liner notes on the music and performance issues.

    For musicians who are professionals themselves, or training to be, it is an invaluable rehearsal tool, a convenient way to build confidence ahead of a recital or competition. For those who play recreationally, it provides experiences that might otherwise present themselves rarely if at all.

    Forsyth has one of the largest selections of Music Minus One editions available in-store, by phone and online.

    Browse all of our Music Minus One titles

    Here’s just a sample of the many possibilities awaiting you…

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    in E minor, Op. 85 (2-CD set)


    One of the most recognisable and best-loved concertos for any instrument, popularised in the ’60s by the late Jacqueline du Pré, the Elgar Cello Concerto is a work every cellist, professional or amateur, wants to play. As well as the usual features of MMO publications, this edition includes an additional recording without soloist performed 20% slower to assist players even at the earliest stages of learning this iconic work.

    Read more & buy online

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    This is one of our best-selling jazz titles in the MMO series, perfect not only for trumpeters but also for players of any other instrument in B flat such as clarinet or tenor saxophone. Here, the printed solo part provides not only the basic melodies for 10 popular standards – including Fly Me to the Moon and When You’re Smiling – but also a note-for-note transcription of the embellished versions performed on the demonstration recordings by Bob Zottola.

    This is a wonderful resource if you want to try out someone else’s improvisations before developing your own – all with the support of an accomplished big band.

    Read more & buy online

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    If you’re preparing arias from the great oratorios – whether for an appearance with an orchestra or in concert with a pianist – who better to work with than a specialist accompanist who has given recitals with Pavarotti at the Metropolitan Opera and Maria Callas at Carnegie Hall?

    In this, one of our most popular vocal volumes from MMO, John Wustman provides masterful backing for 10 arias, including:

    - ‘The Trumpet Shall Sound’ from Handel’s Messiah;

    - ‘Now Shines the Brightest Glory’ from Haydn’s The Creation;

    - ‘Lord God of Abraham’ from Mendelssohn’s Elijah.

    Read more & buy online

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  • Piano Department

    December 19, 2016

    A digital piano for the smallest spaces - even a corridor


    SALE PRICE £665 (normally £719)

    As we say in our guide on How to buy a digital piano, any such instrument can offer you certain practical advantages: it will be relatively inexpensive and need no tuning or regulation, you will be able to play through headphones without disturbing the rest of the household or neighbours, and it will take up less room than a standard upright piano.

    But here is an instrument that will take up even less room. Occupying only 113.5cm of wall space, and with a depth of just 26cm (less than a Billy bookcase from IKEA), the Korg LP-380 73-note digital piano is little bigger than a classic 73-key electric keyboard on a stand. And yet it has the same essential functionality as the full-length 88-key Korg LP-380 digital piano:

    - it replicates both the sound and the fully weighted hammer action of a real piano;

    - includes a full 3-pedal system;

    - and, despite its small size, has the power to produce the full range of dynamics.

    This means you can fit a high-quality digital piano into the smallest spaces: a bedroom in university halls, the corner of an office, even a corridor. It is an ideal solution for the casual player or learner, for whom the omission of a few keys at either end is unlikely to be an issue since the repertoire they will be exploring tends to avoid such extreme highs and lows.

    This stylish instrument comes in three colour combinations – cream-black, orange-black and silver-black – all of which are in stock. Look out for the cream one in our window at 126 Deansgate, come in and try one on the second floor, or speak to us on 0161 834 3281, extension 606.

    Read more & buy online

  • Recorded Music Department

    December 15, 2016

    Barenboim’s “champagne spirit” - a vintage Viennese New Year


    Daniel Barenboim

    Vienna Philharmonic


    Every year hundreds of thousands of people apply to attend the Vienna Philharmonic’s New Year’s Concert – but only a few hundred are successful, spending between €35 and €1,090 per ticket. The live broadcasts attract millions of viewers around the world, who return year after year for the traditional mixture of works by the Strauss dynasty, particularly the two concluding numbers: Johann Strauss II’s The Blue Danube waltz and Johann Strauss I’s Radetzky March.

    But the concerts are not the same every year: 2014 was of course the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I and the orchestra specially invited Daniel Barenboim back because of his work towards peace and reconciliation, most prominently with the West–Eastern Divan Orchestra, which brings together musicians from Israeli, Arab and Iranian territories. The theme of rapprochement permeates the first half of the concert with works such as Josef Strauss’s Palms of Peace waltz and Johann Strauss I’s Caroline Galop, named after the bridge over the river dividing inner and outer Vienna during the Biedermeier period.

    These two works are among nine pieces in the programme which have never previously been performed at the New Year’s Concerts. Notable among the other premieres are the ‘Moonlight Interlude’ from Capriccio by Richard Strauss – no relation of the Viennese Strausses but an honorary member of the Viennese Philharmonic – and the Pizzicati by Delibes (best known for the ‘Flower Duet’ from his opera Lakmé), inspired by the famous Pizzicato Polka by Johann Strauss II and his brother Josef.

    And as ever, there are ballet sequences performed by the Vienna State Ballet, this time in fantastic costumes by Vivienne Westwood.

    Don’t forget to tune in for the next concert on 1 January 2017 at 11:15am on BBC2, and if you want to try your luck in the ballot for tickets to 2018’s concert, you can register between 2 January and 28 February 2017 via the Vienna Philharmonic’s website.

    But if you want to enjoy the magic of the Strauss family and friends on any other day of the year, 2014 is an excellent vintage: as The Sunday Times put it, “Recent New Year’s Day concerts have been flat affairs, but the champagne spirit flows freely in Daniel Barenboim’s second stint on the podium.”

    Read more & buy online

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