William Shield(1748-1829), Composer
Sitter in 9 portraits
Educated by his father, a music teacher, before being apprenticed to a boat builder, he continued his musical studies under the composer and concert organiser Charles Avison, for whom he frequently played the violin at concerts. He became Bandleader and Conductor at Scarborough and other theatres before moving to London as a violinist in the orchestra of the Haymarket King's Theatre. He progressed quickly to become Leader of the viola section and retained this post for eighteen years. Shield composed or contributed towards thirty-six operas and seven pantomimes and pantomime ballets. In addition to these, he produced three song collections and published several of his most popular theatre songs independently.
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