Kranz, Johann Friedrich
- G. Kraft
(b Weimar, April 6, 1752; d Stuttgart, Feb 20, 1810). German conductor, composer and violinist. The son of a court wigmaker Georg Kranz, he was a precociously talented violinist who studied music with the chamber musician C.G. Göpfert and the Hofkapellmeister E.W. Wolf. He had a position in the Weimar court orchestra as early as 1766, and became a chamber musician in 1778. He undertook extended journeys (1780–87) to Mannheim, Munich, Italy, Vienna and Eszterháza at the behest of Duke Carl August. In Rome in 1787 Kranz and Goethe were among the guests at a feast in the home of the painter Angelica Kauffmann; under Kranz’s direction the dinner evolved into a ‘brilliant concert during the most beautiful summer night’. On his tours he met Cimarosa, Paisiello and Haydn, and this led, on his return to Weimar, to his German adaptations (with the poet C.A. Vulpius) of several operas by Cimarosa, Paisiello and others, as well as his performance of ...