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Masters of the Queen's - and King's - Music
11. William Shield
Born in Gateshead, William Shield (1748-1829) became a noted violinist in Newcastle before moving to Scarborough to lead a theatre orchestra. From 1773 he was principal violist at Covent Garden where he also worked as a composer. He was appointed Master of the King's Musick by George III in 1817. Shield was a great plunderer of folk tunes - in his case, mostly from his native Northumbria.