Sir William Turner Walton (1902–1983)

© the copyright holder. Image credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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During a 60-year career, Walton composed music in various styles and genres, including symphonies, concertos, ballet music, opera and film scores. Influenced by jazz and the music of Stravinsky, he collaborated with Edith Sitwell on 'Façade to An Entertainment' in 1922, a musical accompaniment to her poems. His later works, notably 'Belshazzar's Feast' from 1931, three concertos and two symphonies, show the evolution of a personal style combining modernist elements with traditional forms. Walton met Edith's brother Sacheverell at Oxford University in 1918 and was part of the Sitwell household from 1919 to 1933. The family provided him with patronage and encouragement. He was knighted in 1951.

National Portrait Gallery, London



Sir William Turner Walton (1902–1983)






H 27.5 x W 15 x D 26 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

purchased, 1986

Work type


Signature/marks description

signed in monogram


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