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Alcock, John (1715–1806), organist and composer, was born at the family home, Crane Court, St Peter's Hill, London, on 11 April 1715, the third of the eight children of Daniel Alcock (bap. 1686) and his wife, Mary. They lived only a stone's throw from ...

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Amner, John (d. 1641), composer and organist, came from a family which was intimately associated with the music at Ely Cathedral for over half a century. Michael Amner, his uncle, was a lay clerk at the cathedral (1576–88), as was also Ralph Amner...

Article

Frederick Corder

revised by Nilanjana Banerji

Arnold, George Benjamin (1832–1902), organist and composer, born on 22 December 1832 at Petworth, Sussex, was the son of George Frederick Handel Arnold, organist of the parish church of Petworth, and his wife, Mary. He was articled to George William Chard, the organist of ...

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Attwood, Thomas (1765–1838), composer and organist, was born on 23 November 1765, probably at 20 Eaton Street, Pimlico, Middlesex. He was the second of the six children of Thomas Attwood (d. 1825), a coal merchant and musician who played trumpet, horn, and viola in the king's band, and his wife, ...

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Thomas Attwood (1765–1838) by unknown artist, c. 1815 Royal College of Music, London; photograph National Portrait Gallery, London

Article

Ayleward, Richard (1626–1669), composer and organist, was born at Winchester, the son of Richard Ayleward, a minor canon at the cathedral. He sang there as a chorister under Christopher Gibbons in 1638 and 1639. Nothing is known of his whereabouts during the interregnum. At the Restoration he was appointed organist and master of the choristers at ...

Article

J. A. F. Maitland

revised by K. D. Reynolds

Babell, William (1689/90–1723), musical arranger and harpsichordist, was the son of a bassoonist in the Drury Lane Theatre orchestra, and was taught by his father, by John Christopher Pepusch, and possibly by Handel. A proficient violinist, harpsichordist, and organist, he was active in ...

Article

W. B. Squire

revised by Clive Brown

Bache, Francis Edward (1833–1858), composer and organist, was born on 14 September 1833 at Birmingham, the eldest of the seven children of Samuel Bache (1804–1876), a Unitarian minister, and his wife, Emily, née Higginson (d. 1855). From a very early age he showed extraordinary talent for music, learning the piano, organ, and violin. On the last instrument, which he studied with ...

Article

Barnett, John Francis (1837–1916), composer and pianist, born in London on 16 October 1837, was the son of a singing teacher, Joseph Alfred Barnett (the younger brother of the composer John Barnett), and his wife, née Hudson. He showed an early talent for music and began to study the piano at the age of six. In 1848 he commenced piano lessons with ...

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Bartholomew [née Mounsey], Ann Shepherd (1811–1891), composer, pianist, and organist, was born on 17 April 1811 at 21 Old Compton Street, Soho, London, the eldest child of Thomas Mounsey, a licensed victualler, and his wife, Mary, née Briggs. Her younger sister, Elizabeth Mounsey...

Article

Bateson, Thomas (d. 1630), composer and organist, first appears as the father of a son baptized in 1592; he may have been born in the Wirral, Cheshire, but the identity of both his parents and his wife is unknown. In 1599 he was appointed organist of ...

Article

J. A. F. Maitland

revised by David J. Golby

Battishill, Jonathan (1738–1801), composer and organist, was born in London in May 1738, the son of Jonathan Battishill, a solicitor, and Mary Leverton, his wife, and grandson of Jonathan Battishill, rector of Sheepwash, Devon. At the age of nine he became a chorister of ...

Article

Beckwith, John [called Christmas Beckwith] (1750–1809), organist and composer, was born at Norwich on 25 December 1750, the son of Edward Beckwith. Though widely called Christmas Beckwith on account of his date of birth, he did not use the sobriquet. He came from a musical family, his father and his uncle serving as lay clerks at ...

Article

W. B. Squire

revised by Anne Pimlott Baker

Bennet, William (b. 1767?, d. in or after 1833?), organist and composer, was born at Combeinteignhead, Devon, where his father, the organist at St Andrew's Church, Plymouth, and a descendant of an old Devon family, had inherited an estate. Bennet's first music teachers were ...

Article

Bishop, John (1664/5–1737), organist and composer, was seventy-two at the time of his death, and so was probably born in late 1664 or in 1665, quite possibly in Gloucester, where from 1679 to 1685 he was a chorister at the cathedral. Nothing is known of his parents. According to ...

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Bond, Capel (bap. 1730, d. 1790), musician, was baptized at St Mary de Lode, Gloucester, on 14 December 1730, the son of William Bond, a bookseller in the city, and his wife, who was probably Mary Duks. The painter and japanner Daniel Bond (bap. 1725, d. 1803)...

Article

Bowen, Edwin Yorke [York] (1884–1961), pianist and composer, was born on 22 February 1884 in Crouch Hill, London, the youngest of the three sons of Edward Bowen (d. 1911), founder of the whisky distillers Bowen and McKechnie, and his wife, Ellen Mary (1854–1906)...

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William Boyce (bap. 1711, d. 1779) by Thomas Hudson, c. 1745–50 © Bodleian Library, University of Oxford

Article

Boyce, William (bap. 1711, d. 1779), composer, organist, and music editor, was born in Maiden Lane, London, and was baptized on 11 September 1711 at St James Garlickhythe, the youngest of four children of John Boyce (1673–1752), joiner and cabinet-maker, and his wife, ...

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Brewer, Sir (Alfred) Herbert (1865–1928), organist and composer, the eldest son of Alfred Brewer, hotel proprietor, of Gloucester, and his wife, Cordelia Dyer, was born on 21 June 1865 at Gloucester. For three years, from 1877 to 1880, he was a chorister at the cathedral under ...