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Drighlington man, 93, played to generations of cinema visitors
Dr Arnold Loxam, one of the last great theatre organists, has died aged 93.
Dr Loxam played professionally until the age of 90, and was best known in Bradford for his 16 years at the helm of the Wurlitzer organ at the New Victoria, which became the Gaumont and later the Odeon.
The Drighlington-based organist was inspired to play as a young man when he used to travel the country to watch his mentor Reginald Dixon . He later performed at a memorial concert to his friend.
He met his wife Audrey in 1948 when she was working in the New Victoria as an usherette.
Dr Loxam was invited back to the cinema in 1968 to make a final broadcast from the Gaumont before the Wurlitzer was removed.
His son Keith Loxam said: “He was one of the last great theatre organists of that type, making it his profession to play in the cinema, and he spent his entire career doing it.
“He played at the Gaumont for 16 years and was there in the opening days of Radio Leeds.
“He was very flamboyant and cared greatly about his music, he was completely immersed in the music.”
Former Radio Leeds presenter, Nigel Fell, who worked with Dr Loxam for 20 years, said: “In organist circles there was something known as the Loxam Bounce, to do with the way he played the organ.”
Godfrey Nield, of the Cinema Organ Society North, said: “We in the organ world will miss him greatly and our condolences go to the family.”
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