Camille Saint-SaŽns


Born: Oct 9, 1835; France   Died: Dec 16, 1921; Algeria   Period: Romantic
Camille Saint-SaŽns was something of an anomaly among French composers of the nineteenth century in that he wrote in virtually all genres, including opera, symphonies, concertos, songs, sacred and secular choral music, solo piano, and chamber music. He was generally not a pioneer, though he did help to revive some earlier and largely forgotten dance forms, like the bourťe and gavotte. He was a conservative who wrote many popular scores scattered Read more throughout the various genres: the Piano Concerto No. 2, Symphony No. 3 ("Organ"), the symphonic poem Danse macabre, the opera Samson et Dalila, and probably his most widely performed work, The Carnival of The Animals. While he remained a composer closely tied to tradition and traditional forms in his later years, he did develop a more arid style, less colorful and, in the end, less appealing. He was also a poet and playwright of some distinction.
Saint-SaŽns was born in Paris on October 9, 1835. He was one of the most precocious musicians ever, beginning piano lessons with his aunt at two-and-a-half and composing his first work at three. At age seven he studied composition with Pierre Maledin. When he was ten, he gave a concert that included Beethoven's Third Piano Concerto, Mozart's B flat Concerto, K. 460, along with works by Bach, Handel, and Hummel. In his academic studies, he displayed the same genius, learning languages and advanced mathematics with ease and celerity. He would also develop keen, lifelong interests in geology and astronomy.
In 1848, he entered the Paris Conservatory and studied organ and composition, the latter with Halťvy. By his early twenties, following the composition of two symphonies, he had won the admiration and support of Berlioz, Liszt, Gounod, Rossini, and other notable figures. From 1853 to 1876, he held church organist posts; he also taught at the …cole Niedermeyer (1861-1865). He composed much throughout his early years, turning out the 1853 Symphony in F ("Urbs Roma"), a Mass (1855) and several concertos, including the popular second, for piano (1868).
In 1875, Saint-SaŽns married the 19-year-old Marie Truffot, bringing on perhaps the saddest chapter in his life. The union produced two children who died within six weeks of each other, one from a four-story fall. The marriage ended in 1881. Oddly, this dark period in his life produced some of his most popular works, including Danse macabre (1875) and Samson et Dalila (1878). After the tragic events of his marriage, Saint-SaŽns developed a fondness for Faurť and his family, acting as a second father to Faurť's children.
But he also remained very close to his mother, who had opposed his marriage. When she died in 1888, the composer fell into a deep depression, even contemplating suicide for a time. He did much travel in the years that followed and developed an interest in Algeria and Egypt, which eventually inspired him to write Africa (1891) and his Piano Concerto No. 5, the "Egyptian". He also turned out works unrelated to exotic places, such as his popular and most enduring serious composition, the Symphony No. 3.
Curiously, after 1890, Saint-SaŽns' music was regarded with some condescension in his homeland, while in England and the United States he was hailed as France's greatest living composer well into the twentieth century. Saint-SaŽns experienced an especially triumphant concert tour when he visited the U.S. in 1915. In the last two decades of his life, he remained attached to his dogs and was largely a loner. He died in Algeria on December 16, 1921. Read less

Work: Danse macabre in G minor, Op. 40

Browse 76-100 of 102 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    Encore - Dukas, Frank, Saint-Saens / Michel Plasson
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 55677 Release Date: 07/18/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Dukas,  Cťsar Franck,  Sylvio Lazzari,  Henri Duparc  ... 
    Conductor:  Michel Plasson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toulouse Capitole Orchestra
    CD: $5.99
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  • 77.
    Henry Merckel - Historical Recordings 1930-1935
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 1178 Release Date: 03/28/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Edouard Lalo
    Performer:  Henri Merckel
    Conductor:  Piero Coppola
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pasdeloup Concert Association Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 78.
    Infernal Violins / AngŤle Dubeau, La Pietŗ
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28723 Release Date: 02/17/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Keith Richards,  Luigi Boccherini,  Karol Szymanowski,  Manuel de Falla  ... 
    Performer:  AngŤle Dubeau
    Conductor:  AngŤle Dubeau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  La Pieta
    CD: $22.49
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  • 79.
    Saint-saŽns: Carnival Of The Animals, Etc / Ma, Biggs, Et Al
    Label: Sony Classical Essential Classics   Catalog: 87277 Release Date: 04/15/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  E. Power Biggs,  Michel Cals,  Philippe Entremont,  Alain Marion  ... 
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  Philippe Entremont
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
    CD: $6.99
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  • 80.
    Dancing Flutes / Die 14 Berliner FlŲtisten
    Label: Md&g (Dabringhaus & Grimm) Gold   Catalog: 3081114 Release Date: 08/27/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gerardo Matos RodrŪguez,  Amilcare Ponchielli,  A. Malando,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  14 Berlin Flutes
    CD: $17.99
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  • 81.
    Homage To Horowitz / Valery Kuleshov
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1188 Release Date: 10/30/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Philip Sousa,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Valery Kuleshov
    CD: $21.49
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  • 82.
    Sibelius: Symphony No 5, Karelia Suite / Gibson, Lso
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 468488 Release Date: 07/11/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Alexander Gibson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  New Symphony Orchestra
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 83.
    Infernal Violins - Tartini, Et Al / Dubeau, La Pietŗ
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28718 Release Date: 01/30/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Traditional,  Karol Szymanowski,  Manuel de Falla  ... 
    Performer:  AngŤle Dubeau
    Conductor:  AngŤle Dubeau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  La Pieta
    ArkivCD $32.28
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  • 84.
    Devil's Dance / Gil Shaham
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 463483 Release Date: 09/12/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  EugŤne Ysaˇe,  William Bolcom,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Giuseppe Tartini  ... 
    Performer:  Jonathan Feldman,  Gil Shaham
    On sale! $19.99
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  • 85.
    French Orchestral Favorites - Dukas, Debussy, Satie / Pretre, Ortf National Orchestra
    Label: Emi Seraphim   Catalog: 73427 Release Date: 06/15/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Erik Satie,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Andrť Gantiez,  MichŤle Boussinot,  Philippe Pierlot
    Conductor:  Georges PrÍtre
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  ORTF National Orchestra
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 86.
    Mephisto & Co. / Eiji Oue, Minnesota Orchestra
    Label: Reference Recordings   Catalog: 82 Release Date: 03/24/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Malcolm Arnold,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Paul Dukas  ... 
    Performer:  Jorja Fleezanis
    Conductor:  Eiji Oue
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Minnesota Orchestra
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  • 87.
    The Best Of Saint-saens
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8556675 Release Date: 09/15/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Dong-Suk Kang,  Idil Biret,  Imrich Szabo,  Peter Toperczer  ... 
    Conductor:  Antoni Wit,  James Loughran,  Richard Hayman,  Stephen Gunzenhauser  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra Katowice,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $12.99
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  • 88.
    Double Forte / Todd Wilson, David Higgs
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3175 Release Date: 05/21/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Christian Bach,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Calvin Hampton,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  David Higgs,  Todd Wilson
    CD: $17.99
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  • 89.
    Bizet: Carmen Suite, Etc;  Offenbach, At Al / Munch, Et Al
    Label: London/Decca Double Decker   Catalog: 443033 Release Date: 01/23/1996   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Georges Bizet,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Jacques Offenbach,  Paul Dukas  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Munch,  Jean Martinon,  Sir Georg Solti,  Ernest Ansermet
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New Philharmonia Orchestra,  Orchestre de la Sociťtť du Conservatoire Paris,  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $24.98
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  • 90.
    Greatest Hits - Saint-saens
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 69251 Release Date: 11/14/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Michel Arrignon,  Gaby Casadesus,  Alain Marion  ... 
    Conductor:  Philippe Entremont,  Eugene Ormandy,  Lorin Maazel,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  ORTF National Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic  ... 
    CD: $9.99
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  • 91.
    M Welte & SŲhne - Pneumatic Orchestrions
    Label: Raven Recordings   Catalog: 10 Release Date: 01/01/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Vincenzo Bellini,  Cross,,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Harold Arlen  ... 
    On sale! $20.98
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  • 92.
    Saint-SaŽns: Symphony no 3 / DePreist, Royal Stockholm PO
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 555 Release Date: 10/12/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Hans Fagius
    Conductor:  James DePreist
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $21.49
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  • 93.
    The Best of Saint-SaŽns
    Label: Philips Duo   Catalog: 442608 Release Date: 10/11/1994   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Daniel Chorzempa,  Henryk Szeryng,  Michele Campanella,  Bella Davidovich  ... 
    Conductor:  Edo De Waart,  Edouard Van Remoortel,  Neeme Jšrvi,  Bernard Haitink  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra,  Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $19.99
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  • 94.
    Dukas: Sorcerer's Apprentice; Saint-saens, Etc / Gibson
    Label: Chandos Collect   Catalog: 6503 Release Date: 10/28/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ottorino Respighi,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Paul Dukas
    Conductor:  Sir Alexander Gibson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Scottish National Orchestra
    CD: $11.99
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  • 95.
    Classics From The Crypt
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 61238 Release Date: 09/08/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Hector Berlioz,  Franz Liszt,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy,  Georges PrÍtre,  Fritz Reiner,  Arthur Fiedler
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra members  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 96.
    Saint-saŽns: Danse Macabre, Etc / Dutoit, Philharmonia Orch
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 425021 Release Date: 05/12/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Kyung-Wha Chung
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $11.99
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  • 97.
    Stokowski Showcase / National Philharmonic Orchestra
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 64140 Release Date: 03/17/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Schubert,  John Philip Sousa  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  National Philharmonic Orchestra
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 98.
    Fright Night - Music That Goes Bump In The Night
    Label: Cbs Masterworks Digital Masters   Catalog: 45530 Release Date: 07/01/1991   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Franz Liszt,  Charles Ives,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Elisabeth SŲderstrŲm,  Gilbert Kalish,  E. Power Biggs,  Lorin Maazel
    Conductor:  John Pritchard,  Eugene Ormandy,  Lorin Maazel,  Sir Andrew Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne GŁrzenich Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra,  New York String Quartet  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 99.
    Saint-SaŽns: Carnaval des animaux / Charles Dutoit
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 414460 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Pascal Rogť,  Cristina Ortiz
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Sinfonietta
    CD: $17.99
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  • 100.
    Saint-Saens: Organ Symphony, Danse Macabre / Barenboim, Chicago SO
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 415847 Release Date: 05/30/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Gaston Gilbert Litaize
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de Paris,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
    ArkivCD $16.99
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