Gansbacher, Johann

1778-1844

Born at Sterzing, Tyrol; began his musical education as a choir-boy and pupil under his father, the choirmaster in his native town, and later studied under Vogler and Albrechtsberger in Vienna, where he taught and composed. After a visit to Prague he next went to Dresden and Leipsic, and in 1810 to Darmstadt, to resume his studies under Vogler. Here he became the intimate friend of Meyerbeer and Weber, also pupils of Vogler, and assisted Weber in his concerts at Mannheim and Heidelberg, and later in Prague, after a sojourn at Vienna, where he met Beethoven. He served in the war of 1813, and for the next ten years led a wandering and unsettled life, but succeeded Preindl in 1823 as chapelmaster of the cathedral in Vienna, a post he held till his death. He was highly esteemed both as a man and a musician. His compositions show thorough preparation rather than originality. Out of two hundred and sixteen in all, comparatively few were published. His church music included seventeen masses; four requiems; and several Te Deums and offertories. His other works comprise a symphony; sonatas; trios and other music for piano; marches; serenades; concerted pieces; various songs and vocal compositions; a Liederspiel; and music to Kotzebue's Kreuzfahrer.