Amazing and Rare Original Oil Painting by well listed British Artist Sydney Prior Hall MVO, MA (18 October 1842 Ð 1922) | Oil on Canvas | Entitled ÒThe OperaÓ | Dimensions: Approx. 58_ H x 42_ W | Painting has a some light soiling and a quarter inch tear in the canvas in the background not affecting the figures, otherwise in good condition. Very rare painting from the already scarce paintings by Hall. Sir Sydney Prior Hall MVO, MA (18 October 1842 Ð 1922) was a British portrait painter and illustrator and one of the leading reportage artists of the later Victorian period. Born 18 October 1842 to a painter father, Sydney Prior Hall was educated at Merchant TaylorsÕ School, Pembroke College Oxford and the Royal Academy Schools. Hall had a long career as special artist for The Graphic; his illustrations were key in establishing The GraphicÕs reputation. From 1870-71 he covered the Franco-Prussian war, and his drawings of the siege of Paris were famously sent to London by balloon post. Several of these drawings were published in 1875 as Sketches from an ArtistÕs Portfolio, which he dedicated to the Prince of Wales. Hall also collaborated with Parker Gillmore on several books based on his experiences, including All Round the World: Adventures in Europe, Asia, Africa and America (1871) and Adventures in Many Lands (1879). Hall provided illustrations for Bulwer LyttonÕs The Parisians in 1873. After the war, Hall largely illustrated tours of royalty and dignitaries; the Prince of Wales, for example, asked Hall to accompany him on his Indian tour of 1875-6. Hall provided sketches from this tour to illustrate William Howard RussellÕs publication The Prince of WalesÕ Tour: A Diary in India, with some account of the visits of His Royal Highness to the Courts of Greece, Egypt, Spain and Portugal, with illustrations by Sydney P. Hall (1877). Hall then illustrated journeys taken to Canada by Princess Louise and the Marquess of Lorne in 1879, and again in 1881 when the Marquess of Lorne travelled around the North West Territories. The Graphic ran this series of over one hundred images from August 1881 to February 1882. Hall famously travelled with the Duke and Duchess of York aboard the HMS Ophir in 1901, and his images were published in The Graphic. Hall died 15 December 1922 in London. Four of HallÕs paintings are held in the Royal Collection of Britain including ÒDivers leaping at Fatehpur SikriÓ 1876, ÒInvestiture of Haakon VII of Norway with the GarterÓ 1906-08, ÒVictor Albert Jay Duleep SinghÓ 1879, and ÒThe Unveiling of the Queen Victoria MemorialÓ 1911-12.