Walton, Sir William

Walton, Sir William

▪ British composer
in full  Sir William Turner Walton  
born March 29, 1902, Oldham, Lancashire, Eng.
died March 8, 1983, Ischia, Italy
 English composer especially known for his orchestral music. His early work made him one of England's most important composers between the time of Vaughan Williams and that of Benjamin Britten.

      Walton, the son of a choirmaster father and a vocalist mother, studied violin and piano desultorily as a boy and also sang, with somewhat better results, in his father's choir. He taught himself composition, although he received advice from both Ernest Ansermet and Ferruccio Busoni. In 1912 he entered the University of Oxford, where he sang in the choir of Christ Church. He put in the requisite four years of study but failed by one examination (Responsonions) to win a bachelor of music degree. At Oxford he had met the Sitwell (Sitwell, Sir Osbert, 5th Baronet) brothers, Osbert and Sacheverell (Sitwell, Sir Sacheverell, 6th Baronet), by whom he was virtually adopted, and he spent most of the next decade traveling with them or living with them at Chelsea. During this period he composed Façade (1923)—a set of pieces for chamber ensemble, to accompany the Sitwells' sister Edith (Sitwell, Dame Edith) in a recitation of her poetry—as well as Sinfonia Concertante for piano and orchestra (1928; revised 1943) and Portsmouth Point (1926), which established his reputation as an orchestral composer.

      Walton was influenced by some of his older contemporaries, notably Edward Elgar, Igor Stravinsky, and Paul Hindemith (Hindemith, Paul). Hindemith was soloist in the first performance of one of Walton's finest works, his Viola Concerto (1929). Walton also composed a number of scores for motion pictures, including Major Barbara (1941), Henry V (1944), Hamlet (1947), and Richard III (1954). His vocal music includes the oratorio Belshazzar's Feast (1931) and the operas Troilus and Cressida (1954) and The Bear (one act; 1967). The composer received a knighthood in 1951.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Walton,Sir William Turner — Walton, Sir William Turner. 1902 1983. British composer of orchestral works and chamber music, including Façade (1923), an extravaganza accompanying poems by Edith Sitwell. * * * …   Universalium

  • Walton, Sir William (Turner) — born March 29, 1902, Oldham, Lancashire, Eng. died March 8, 1983, Ischia, Italy British composer. His parents were musicians, and he learned to sing and play piano and violin early. He established his reputation at age 19 by setting to jazzy… …   Universalium

  • Walton, Sir William (Turner) — (29 mar. 1902, Oldham, Lancashire, Inglaterra–8 mar. 1983, Ischia, Italia). Compositor británico. Sus padres fueron músicos y a temprana edad aprendió a cantar y tocar el piano y el violín. Se consagró a los 19 años al crear música con influencia …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Sir William Turner Walton — noun English composer (1902 1983) • Syn: ↑Walton, ↑William Walton, ↑Sir William Walton • Instance Hypernyms: ↑composer …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sir William Walton — noun English composer (1902 1983) • Syn: ↑Walton, ↑William Walton, ↑Sir William Turner Walton • Instance Hypernyms: ↑composer …   Useful english dictionary

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  • WALTON (W. T.) — WALTON sir WILLIAM TURNER (1902 1983) La Grande Bretagne a engendré peu de compositeurs mais, entre Purcell et Britten, elle a connu quelques créateurs dignes d’intérêt que leur «britannisme» excessif a cantonnés dans les limites insulaires au… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • William Walton — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Walton. Sir William Turner Walton est un compositeur britannique né à Oldham (Lancashire) le 29 mars 1902, et mort à Ischia (Italie) le 8 mars 1983. D abord surnommé « l’enfant terrible de la musique… …   Wikipédia en Français

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