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Before he decided on a singing career and took up voice studies with Martin Gründler at the Frankfurt Music Academy, the baritone Johannes Martin Kränzle, who was born in 1962 in Augsburg, studied violin and music theater direction. His first engagement was with the Theater Dortmund; in 1991 he transferred to the Staatsoper Hannover and, in 1998, to Frankfurt Opera, where he remains a member of the ensemble. There he has performed the core parts of his repertoire, which encompasses more than 100 roles: Wolfram in Tannhäuser, Mozart’s Don Alfonso and Don Giovanni, Pizarro in Beethoven’s Fidelio, Tomsky in Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spades, and Morone in Pfitzner’s Palestrina. Other credits include with the Municipal Theaters of Cologne, San Francisco Opera, the Hamburg and Bavarian Staatsoper companies, the Vienna Volksoper, and the Grand Théâtre de Genève. Kränzle has appeared in Handel’s Theodora and in the world premiere of Rihm’s Dionysos at the Salzburg Festival. In 2010 he made his role debut as Alberich in a new production of the Ring under Daniel Barenboim at La Scala in Milan, which can also be seen at Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, and in 2011 came his Glyndebourne Festival debut, where he performed Beckmesser from Die Meistersinger under Vladimir Jurowski. As a singer of lieder and oratorios, Kränzle has appeared in concert at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Dresden Music Festival, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, and the Budapest Spring Festival. His first CD, titled Die Mitternacht zog näher schon, is an anthology of ballads by Loewe, Schumann, Schubert, Mahler, Wolf, and Busoni. In 2011 Johannes Martin Kränzle won the Cologne Opera Award and was named Singer of the Year by Opernwelt’s critics.