William Walton, composer
Robert O’Brien, arranger
Façade is referred to by the composer as an “entertainment,”
with text by Dame Edith Sitwell.
David Ewen notes that the music is filled with “parody, burlesque, mock
seriousness, tongue-in-cheek sentimentality, and calculated
This melodrama, originally written for seven instruments and reciting voice,
consists of 21 movements, of which five have been arranged for band by Robert
Walton’s unique style is grounded in Romantic passion with clear
classical structure, dissonant yet tonal harmonies, and a touch of jazz
Façade was first performed at the Sitwell home in Chelsea, England, in
January 1922, with Dame Edith Sitwell reciting.