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Kratz, Karl



Karl Kratz was born in Cologne, West Germany. After graduating Theatre School, his further study of Modern Dance included the Laban-Wigman movement and the Kurt Jooss-Leeder system in Switzerland. In Ballet, he was a pupil of Marcel Luipart and Victor Gsovsky, and he performed with the Munich State Opera, the Duesseldorf Municipal Opera and the Opera Ballet of Cologne.

Due to a serious knee injury, Kratz directed his knowledge toward teaching and for a year he taught at the Erika Lindner School in Memmingen, Bavaria. Resuming his professional career as a dancer, he was engaged as soloist at the Municipal Theatre in Kaiserslautern, the State Theatre in Braunschweig, and the Opera House in Frankfurt. Before his departure for America, Kratz dedicated several years to studying contemporary music as well as performing in Darmstadt, West Germany.

In 1957, Kratz was engaged as Guest Lecturer at the Conservatory of Music in Kansas City, Missouri, where he taught Ballet and Modern Dance classes as well as choreographing for the Opera Workshop, the Kansas City Civic Ballet, the Coach House Players, and the Virginia Loncar School of Dance, where he also taught. In the summer of 1959 he went to New York to study at the Martha Graham School, as well as with Vladimir Dokoudovsky, Thalia Mara, Yurek Lazowski, Matt Mattox, Frank Wagner, and Luigi. During this time Kratz taught at the “Ballet Repertory School”, the Dokoudovsky School of Classic Ballet, and Goodman’s Dance Workshop in Ithaca, New York, and did choreography for the Newburgh Ballet Guild and the Fabian-Young School of Dancing in Wallingford, Connecticut.

Kratz returned to Kansas City in 1972 to teach at Avila College and the Southtown Y.M.C.A.

Source: Biographical sheet found in the collection (Box 2, Folder 1).

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Karl Kratz Collection

Identifier: MS-0227
Scope and Contents The Karl Kratz Collection contains documents and memorabilia from the life and career of Kratz, who spent time in Kansas City with the Kansas City Civic Ballet Company and at the Conservatory of Music and Dance. Materials from both Germany and America offer a glimpse into dance history both here and overseas. Including documents such as biographical information, correspondence, newspaper clippings and instructional texts, as well as programs, periodicals, photographs, and a scrapbook that...
Dates: 1923 - 1985