Allen Frantzen grew up on a farm just outside of New Hampton, Iowa. Here, he developed interests in writing and music– playing the piano and creating poems and short stories he would share with his friends and family.
He attended St. William School in Alta Vista, Iowa and later went on to Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa. Allen Frantzen graduated magna cum laude from Loras College as an English major in 1969. He won the J. J. O’Connor Award for being an outstanding member of the senior class. During his time at Loras College, Allen worked as an editor for the campus newspaper and also wrote for the school’s literary magazine.
Today, Allen J. Frantzen is a successful author with a long list of books and other publications. A lot of the work he has written is based around the World War I era. Frantzen holds a great interest in World War I partly because of his past experiences as a soldier. In 1970, Allen lived in Korea for a year as a soldier in the US Army. During this time he learned to speak some Korean at a basic level and was able to travel all around the country. Another reason Allen Frantzen was greatly interested in World War I as a writing subject was due to the images and ideas from the Middle Ages that were used during the war to recruit and build spirit. Allen has a great deal of knowledge and expertise on this subject as it was his academic specialty.
Beyond writing, Allen Frantzen is also passionate about music and boxing. For many years, Allen has been training as an amateur boxer. Though he doesn’t enter into official fights, Allen enjoys working with other boxers and sparring with his coaches a few times a week. Frantzen also enjoys reading biographies of famous boxers as well as their trainers. He maintains a list of these books and has even written reviews for the ones he has read.
As for music, Allen loves most opera and classical music. His particular favorites are the operas of Richard Wagner and Benjamin Britten. Frantzen has also written text for various operas and musical performances:
A Son at the Front is a play with music written by Allen’s nephew, John Frantzen. The text is based on a famous novel of the same name about World War I, written by Edith Wharton and published in 1923.
The play has been read and performed several times including performances at the Athenaeum Theatre in Chicago and at the Comparative Drama Conference in Los Angeles. Allen Frantzen was responsible for writing the text.
-Circles of Grief
Allen also wrote the text for “Circles of Grief”, a song cycle based on German, French, and English letters written during World War I. The songs were performed in France on November 10th and 11th, 2005. Allen worked with a French composer, Pierre Thilloy, who wrote the music.
Allen is currently enjoying retirement and continuing to write. He has a few books and stories that he is preparing to publish.
To learn more about these interests mentioned above and more, follow Allen Frantzen on Quora: https://www.quora.com/profile/Allen-Frantzen-1.