Dalies Frantz



Competition Winner

Born: January 9, 1908 (Lafayette, Colorado)

Died: December 1, 1965 (Austin, Texas)

Dalies Frantz, born in Lafayette, Colorado grew up in Denver where he began his piano studies at age 7. He was considered a prodigy and at age 14, he was the winner in a statewide piano contest conducted by the Charles E. Wells Music Company. Following, he began piano studies at the Huntington Preparatory School in Boston, where he also became captain of the swimming team breaking several New England freestyle swim records.

From 1926-1930, he studied under Guy Maier at the University of Michigan, receiving a bachelor of music degree with highest honors. After graduation, he traveled to Europe to study with Artur Schnabel and Vladimir Horowitz. He returned to the US and made his debut with the New York Philharmonic in 1932 and the Philadelphia Orchestra under Leopold Stokowski in 1934.

He was named a winner of the piano prize in the 1932 Walter W. Naumburg Foundation's competition making his NY debut in Town Hall. The following year he was a soloist at Carnegie Hall under the terms of the Schubert Memorial Award.

"He showed himself one of the most serious and gifted of the rising generation of American pianists," Olin Downes, a music critic for The New York Times wrote. "We admired and enjoyed Mr. Frantz's treatment of one of Busoni's Chorale arrangements. He played the mystical music with poetry, imagination and true feeling."

Shortly after, he was signed by Columbia Concerts Corporation and traveled throughout the United States giving concerts in recital and appearing as a soloist with orchestras.

Frantz later landed a contract with Metro Goldwyn Mayer (MGM) and starred in three movies: Sweethearts (1938), Balalaika (1939) and I Take This Woman (1940). He was scheduled to record the soundtrack of a biopic film about Chopin A Song to Remember, but the film was postponed by the onset of World War II. During the War, he served briefly as an intelligence officer in a West Coast fighter squadron but was given a medical discharge before the end of the war. He also played war-bond concerts and toured.

In December of 1945 Frantz collapsed and was hospitalized for nearly a year.

Frantz joined the faculty at the University of Texas at Austin department of music in 1943 where he was recognized as one of the outstanding music teachers in the country. He taught at the University of Texas at Austin until his death in 1965.


1932 Naumburg Competition

First Prize

Commissioned Works

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Naumburg Performances

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Recording Awards

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