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Austrian, later Canadian, harpsichordist, pianist, and teacher; pupil of Hans Weisse and Heinrich Schenker.

Career Summary

Kraus studied at the Vienna Academy for Music and Performing Arts from 1923, receiving her Teacher's Diploma in 1930. She studied history, analysis, and piano with Hans Weisse 1924‒31, and subsequently analysis with Schenker 1931‒33. Initially a pianist, she made her debut as a harpsichordist in Vienna in 1935.

In1938 she emigrated to Canada, settling in Toronto in 1939, where she taught at Havergal College and privately, and established herself as a harpsichord soloist and continuo player, founding the Toronto Baroque Ensemble in 1958. She worked with many distinguished artists. Several commercial recordings were made of her harpsichord playing and piano accompaniment. Among her pupils were Austin Clarkson and R. Murray Shafer. She was married to Erwin Dentay.

Greta Kraus and Schenker

Greta Kraus was a student of Hans Weisse and member of a seminar conducted by Weisse prior to his emigration to New York in September 1931. At the start of the 1931/32 season, she became a member of Schenker's "Friday Seminar" with Trude Kral, Felix Salzer, and Manfred Willfort.

She appears in Schenker's set of lesson notes for the seminar October 9, 1931 to May 23, 1932: OC 16/39-42); she is recorded as having worked on the Chopin Etude in F major, Op. 10, No. 8. Graphs in her hand of Beethoven, Piano Sonata in C# minor, Op. 27, No. 2 ("Moonlight"), and Brahms, "Auf dem Kirchhofe," Op. 105, No. 4, prepared for the seminar, survive in the Felix Salzer papers, Music Division, New York Public Library (Box 55, Folder 7, Box 28, Folder 2, and Box 28, Folder 60). She ceased to be a member of the seminar in June 1934 (FS 40/1, [22], June 6, 1934, letter to Salzer).


No correspondence between Kraus and Schenker is known to survive. Two letters from her to Oswald Jonas, in her married name, survive from 1954 (OJ 36/166).


  • The Encyclopedia of Music in Canada (online edition), "Greta Kraus" (William Schabas, Betty Nygaard King)
  • Beach, David, "An Analysis of Schubert's 'Der Neugierige': A Tribute to Greta Kraus," Canadian University Music Review, vol. 19, No. 1 (1998), 69‒80


  • Hedi Siegel and Ian Bent

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