Sign up for newsletters, get FREE downloads, exclusive offers and more.
Walton The Complete Facades
‘In July of 2021, I finally met with an all-star cast at the Virginia Arts Festival to work on a project delayed by the pandemic – the first complete recording of Walton’s Façade, including the appendix of four poems that had never been captured on disc. Façade – and the composer’s relationship to the poet Edith Sitwell – is an intriguing story of the artistic brainchild of two extraordinary artists during a fertile and fervid time in an England emerging from the flu epidemic, a hundred years ago.’
JoAnn Falletta, conductor

Includes World Premiere Recording

William WALTON (1902–1983)
The Complete Façades

Hila Plitmann, Fred Child and Kevin Deas, Narrators
Virginia Arts Festival Chamber Players
JoAnn Falletta

Edith Sitwell’s invitation to William Walton to collaborate on an innovative, revolutionary new work came at a critical moment in the young composer’s career, and Façade proved to be his first great success. The peerless combination of a peculiarly English dry wit, genuine pathos and superlative technical skill remains an extraordinary achievement. Sitwell’s verses conjure a satirical and poignant world of bourgeois late-Victorian England, while Walton’s settings unfailingly enhance and enrich the texts in a work in which words and music are unquestionably of equal importance. This release includes the first recording of Small Talk (1922) and three numbers first performed in 1977 but subsequently rejected by the composer.

Listen to an extract from Façade 1:
XII. Country Dance
Listen to JoAnn Falletta in conversation with Peter Hall about this release.
About the Artists

Multiple GRAMMY Award-winning conductor JoAnn Falletta serves as music director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and music director laureate of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra. With a discography of over 120 titles, she is a leading recording artist for Naxos. She is also the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards and was named both Performance Today’s Classical Woman of the Year 2019 and one of the 50 great conductors of all time by Gramophone magazine.

The Virginia Arts Festival Chamber Players have presented numerous world premieres and new productions of classical music, dance and theatre from some of today’s most influential composers, choreographers and playwrights. The festival’s arts education programmes reach tens of thousands of schoolchildren each year through student matinees, in-school performances, artist residencies, masterclasses and demonstrations.

Two-time GRAMMY Award-winning soprano, songwriter and actress Hila Plitmann is noted for her opera, concert, film and theatre performances hallmarked by emotionally charged fearlessness, a unique expressivity and mesmerising drama. A frequent soloist on major stages across the world, she’s widely recognised as one of today’s foremost interpreters of both contemporary music and traditional repertoire, and for her involvement with boundary-pushing projects in non-classical genres.

Since 2000, Fred Child has served as host of American Public Media’s Performance Today, the most popular classical music radio show in America. He is also the commentator and announcer for Live from Lincoln Center. Child hosts musical events on stages around the United States, working with major orchestras and festivals. Beyond the world of classical music, he has hosted National Public Radio’s innovative Creators at Carnegie, a programme of wide-ranging performers in concert.

A graduate of The Juilliard School, bass-baritone Kevin Deas is much in demand performing symphonic concert works, oratorio and opera, with his diverse repertoire spanning Baroque to contemporary works. He has been engaged by America's leading conductors and has performed frequently with orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Chicago, San Francisco, St Louis, Montreal and Tokyo Symphony Orchestras.

Other releases featuring the Virginia Arts Festival Players
The Soldier’s Tale (Complete)

Yang • Child • McGuire • Biehl • Virginia Arts Festival Chamber Players • Falletta
‘The musical performance under JoAnn Falletta, with Tianwa Yang as the violinist, is outstanding, clear and crispy, beautifully balanced, and rhythmically sharp.’
The Soldier’s Tale Suite
Octet • Les noces

Yang • Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus • Virginia Arts Festival Chamber Players • Falletta
‘…the performance of the Suite by Falletta and the Virginia players, as well as the recording, are splendid. Stravinsky would have approved.’
Classical Net
(arr. Schoenberg)

Platts • Reid • Williams • Attacca Quartet • Virginia Arts Fesival Chamber Players • JoAnn Falletta
‘… the playing is extremely fine, with a real sense of give and take between the instrumentalists. The woodwind are particularly beautiful and poised.’
Award-winning recordings by JoAnn Falletta
The Passion of Yeshua

Plitmann • Worth • Overton • Bridges • Fallon • Bass • UCLA Chamber Singers • Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus and Orchestra • Falletta
‘The real star ... is JoAnn Falletta, who goes after the score with everything she has. Buffalo has gone from strength to strength under her baton, and that trend continues here.’
American Record Guide
‘Fuchs writes music that the LSO plays with total grasp of the idiom ... and JoAnn Falletta understands the style perfectly.’
‘Once again, Falletta and the Buffalo Philharmonic perform superbly, and this serves as a worthy makeweight to the absolutely essential Bob Dylan cycle.’
For the full list of JoAnn Falleta’s discography on Naxos, follow this link

View all Features »