CARL HEINRICH GRAUN (1704 - 1759)
Younger brother of Johann Gottlieb Graun, Carl Heinrich too had his early education as a chorister in Dresden, where he distinguished himself as a singer, as in other respects. He was employed in Brunswick in the court musical establishment, able, after the eventual death of his patron, to join his brother at the court of the Prussian Crown Prince, becoming Royal Kapellmeister on the latter’s accession in 1740. His career, until his death, was closely connected with the Royal Opera in Berlin, of which he was the chief composer.
Influenced by the example of Hasse in Dresden and by the relatively conservative tastes of Frederick the Great, Graun wrote 26 operas for Berlin, some with libretti based on Italian translations of the King’s own texts.
Instrumental and Vocal Music
Graun left 30 or so harpsichord concertos, while his vocal music ranged from liturgical settings to songs and secular cantatas.