Alan Rawsthorne

Alan Rawsthorne was born in Lancashire, England in 1905 and died in Cambridge in 1971.

He apparently initially trained as a dentist, but eventually studied at the Royal Manchester College of Music from 1926 to 1930. After that, he took piano lessons from Egon Petri in Poland. He returned to England in 1932 and became a freelance composer with his income coming primarily from his work producing film scores. He achieved international recognition in 1938, however, for his Theme and Variations for two violins, performed at the Internation Society for Contemporary Music in London (Benjamin Britten's own

He served in the army during the Second World War, and it wasn't until post-war that he was able to produce two violin concertos, a cello concerto, three symphonies, a couple of string quartets and various other chamber works, all of which are characterised by vigorous counterpoint and enriched tonal harmony. His music perhaps is reminiscent of Hindemith, though he was occasionally able to produce more 'picturesque' output when the occasion demanded. His most famous film score is probably the one he wrote for The Cruel Sea in 1953, at least amongst his UK-born listeners of a 'certain vintage'!

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(since January 9th 2021)

Date of PlayTime of PlayGenreCompositionLengthPlay Count
Date of PlayTime of PlayGenreCompositionLengthPlay Count