Michael Haydn - Contemporary composers





  Joseph Martin Kraus was born in 1756 in Miltenburg am Main in Germany. His earliest education was in nearby Buchen, followed by a period at the Jesuit Gymnasuim and Music Seminar in Mannheim. Here he studied German Litterature as well as music. He finally studied law at the universities in Mainz, Erfurt and Göttingen.

In 1778, having finally decided to embark on a musical career, Kraus sought employment at the court of Gustav III of Sweden. After some initial problems, he was appointed deputy Kapellmästere in 1781, following the succesful performance of a trial work, 'Proserpina', with a text draft by the King himself.

Kraus travelled round Europe on the Kings expence from 1782 to 1787. On this tour, he met persons such as Gluck and Haydn. The year after his return to Stockholm, he was appointed First Kapellmästere and director of curriculum at the Royal Academy of Music. He achieved a reputation as both conductor, composer and teacher.

Joseph Martin Kraus died of tuberculosis in 1792, nine months after the assassination of Gustav III.

He was a highly innovative composer, whose works included a large amount of symphonies.


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