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Biography

Noel Rawsthorne (b.1929) is an English organist and composer

Born on the 24th December, he was a pupil of Germani in Italy and Harold Dawber at the Royal Manchester College. He became Organist of Liverpool Cathedral from 1955 to 1980. While there, he composed many original choral works, such as the Festive Eucharist (1978) which is still sung regularly by churches across the Anglican Diocese of Liverpool.

He also received an honorary doctorate in music from the University of Liverpool and his work with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra included supervision of the refurbishment of the Rushworth organ in the Philharmonic Hall. He mentored Ian Tracey, who succeeded him as Musical Director of the Cathedral in 1980.

Rawsthorne's compositions and arrangements are found in many contemporary collections of organ music. His Hornpipe Humoresque is an amusing set of variations on the familiar Sailor's Hornpipe, in the styles of (and with apologies to) Bach (Brandenburg Concertos number 3, 1st movement), Vivaldi ("Spring", 1st movement, from The Four Seasons), Arne (Rule Britannia) and Widor ("Toccata" from Symphony for Organ number 5).

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