Happy Birthday Camille Saint-Saens!

Happy Birthday Saint-Saens!

Today is the birthday of Charles-Camille Saint-Saens – a French Composer who is known for his works in the Romance Era.

Born in Paris in 1835, Saint-Saens was raised by his widowed mother. He showed a very strong talent for music from an early age. At the age of 2 he was able to demonstrate perfect pitch. He performed his first concert at the age of 5, accompanying a Violin Concerto on Piano.

Saint-Saens studied Organ and Composition at Paris Conservatory. He then went on to work as the organist for the Church of the Madeleine, the official church of the French Empire. Known for his adhesion to the models and practices of the Classical greats, even in the period of Wagner’s contemporary influence at the time, his piece ‘The Swan’ from his work ‘The Carnival of the Animals’ and his Symphony No. 3 ‘Organ’ are considered his greatest works.

About his Symphony No. 3, Saint-Saens said ‘I gave everything to it I was able to give… What I have accomplished here, I will never achieve again’.

Saint-Saens died after suffering a sudden heart attack in Algiers in 1921. This was following a tour of America, when Camille was 86. He is widely regarded as a stoic man, a brilliant mind and a traditional, prolific composer.

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