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Belshazzar's Feast
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About the Author

Sir William Walton was born in Oldham, Lancashire in 1902, the son of a choirmaster and a singing-teacher. He became a chorister at Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, and then an undergraduate at the University. His first composition to attract attention was a piano quartet written at the age of sixteen. At Oxford he made the acquaintance of the Sitwells who gave him friendship, moral and financial support and in 1922 he collaborated with Edith in devising the entertainment Facade. Less than ten years later, Osbert prepared the text of another masterwork, Belshazzar's Feast From 1922 to 1927 Walton began to spend an increasing amoun of time abroad, notably in Switzerland and Italy. The war years were devoted mainly to writing film and ballet scores and he became established as amongst the greatest composers for the screen.

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The new edition is slightly larger than the earlier one, which means that even though the music appears much more spread out - and the printing quality is vastly improved - there are only ten more pages than in the earlier version. Changes to the old edition are mostly small, and most importantly the rehearsal numbers remain the same, so mixing editions should not prove too painful ... OUP has done a great job here ... Music Teacher October 08

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