Camille Saint-SaŽns

Biography

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

Saint-saŽns: La Princesse Jaune, Etc / Francis Travis, Et Al
Release Date: 10/24/2000   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 9837   Number of Discs: 1
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Saint-saŽns: Carnival Of The Animals;  Mozart / Turovsky
Release Date: 07/26/1994   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 9246   Number of Discs: 1
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Saint-saŽns: Symphonies 2 & 3 / Tortelier, Weir, Ulster Orch
Release Date: 10/28/1992   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 8822   Number of Discs: 1
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Schumann, Grieg, Saint-SaŽns: Piano Concertos / Shelley, Greed, Opera North Orchestra
Release Date: 03/31/2009   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10509   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Introduction and Rondo capriccioso

Browse 26-50 of 135 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Icon - Young Genius Of The Violin / Michael Rabin
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 6790602 Release Date: 01/10/2012   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  NiccolÚ Paganini,  Henri Wieniawski,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Rabin,  Leon Pommers
    Conductor:  Lovro von Matacic,  Sir Eugene Goossens,  Sir Adrian Boult,  Alceo Galliera  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra
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  • 27.
    Michael Rabin -  Studio Recordings 1954-1960
    Label: Testament   Catalog: 1471 Release Date: 12/13/2011   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  NiccolÚ Paganini,  Alexander Glazunov,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  Michael Rabin,  Leon Pommers
    Conductor:  Sir Eugene Goossens,  Lovro von Matacic,  Alceo Galliera,  Felix Slatkin  ... 
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  • 28.
    Saint-saens: Concertos, Carnival Of The Animals / Ciccolini, Hoelscher, Tortelier
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 0834312 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Aldo Ciccolini,  Ulf Hoelscher,  Ralph Kirshbaum,  Paul Tortelier
    Conductor:  Serge Baudo,  Pierre Dervaux
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de Paris,  New York Philharmonic,  New Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $34.99
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  • 29.
    Spanish Serenade / Winischofer, Ferrer
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 90790 Release Date: 10/11/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Fritz Kreisler,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Pablo de Sarasate
    Performer:  Gernot Winischofer,  Anna Ferrer
    On sale! $22.98
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  • 30.
    The Very Best Of Nathan Milstein
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 94797 Release Date: 07/26/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Johannes Brahms,  AntonŪn DvorŠk,  Alexander Glazunov  ... 
    Performer:  Nathan Milstein,  Leon Pommers,  Artur Balsam
    Conductor:  Anatole Fistoulari,  William Steinberg,  Walter Susskind,  Leon Barzin
    CD: $15.99
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  • 31.
    The Very Best Of Yehudi Menuhin
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 94812 Release Date: 07/26/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  NiccolÚ Paganini,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Yehudi Menuhin,  Paul Cocker,  Stťphane Grappelli,  Alan Clare  ... 
    Conductor:  Wilhelm Furtwšngler,  Sir Eugene Goossens,  Alberto Erede,  Rudolf Kempe  ... 
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  • 32.
    Schumann, Franck, Ruzicka, Saint-saens /    	Valentin Radutiu, Per Rundberg
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 759 Release Date: 04/26/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Cťsar Franck,  Peter Ruzicka,  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Valentin Radutiu,  Per Rundberg
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  • 33.
    50 Best Violin
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 48494 Release Date: 04/19/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Luigi Boccherini,  Arcangelo Corelli,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Yehudi Menuhin,  Leon Pommers,  Nathan Milstein,  Gidon Kremer  ... 
    Conductor:  Alberto Lysy,  Herbert von Karajan,  Efrem Kurtz,  Pierre Dervaux  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Europa Galante
    CD: $11.99
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  • 34.
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 1826218 Release Date: 04/05/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Felix Mendelssohn,  AntonŪn DvorŠk,  Jean Sibelius  ... 
    Performer:  Akiko Suwanai
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  • 35.
    Selections - The Best Of James Ehnes
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 29768 Release Date: 03/08/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  AntonŪn DvorŠk,  Fritz Kreisler,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Jules Massenet  ... 
    Performer:  James Ehnes,  Eduard Laurel,  Luc Beausťjour
    Conductor:  Yoav Talmi
    CD: $18.49
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  • 36.
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra 70th Anniversary - Essential Recordings [12-CD Set]
    Label: Helicon   Catalog: 9614 Release Date: 12/07/2010   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Schubert,  Jules Massenet  ... 
    Performer:  Shlomo Mintz,  Julius Katchen,  Artur Rubinstein,  Daniel Barenboim  ... 
    Conductor:  Paul Kletzki,  Josef Krips,  Sir Georg Solti,  Jean Martinon  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,  Ankor Children's Chorus,  Israel Philharmonia Singers
    On sale! $99.98
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  • 37.
    Schmankerln & Postres / Ralf Mathias Caspers, Tamaki Takeda-Caspers
    Label: Genuin Musikproduction   Catalog: 10531 Release Date: 08/30/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Sanger,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Manuel de Falla,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Tamaki Takeda-Caspers,  Ralf Caspers
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Duo Intermezzo
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  • 38.
    The Infinite Trumpet
    Label: Kinnell House Records   Catalog: 88200028 Release Date: 08/05/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Fritz Kreisler,  Riccardo Drigo  ... 
    Performer:  Malcolm McNab
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  • 39.
    Saint-Saens, Chausson, Ysaye / Papavrami, Roth, Philharmonique de Liege Wallonie
    Label: Aeon   Catalog: 1088 Release Date: 06/08/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Ernest Chausson,  EugŤne Ysaˇe
    Performer:  Tedi Papavrami
    Conductor:  FranÁois-Xavier Roth
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  LiŤge Wallonia-Brussels Community Philharmonic
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  • 40.
    Classical Favourites Sampler
    Label: Avid   Catalog: 577 Release Date: 05/11/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Giacomo Puccini,  Franz Schubert,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Jussi BjŲrling,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Claudia Muzio,  Jascha Heifetz  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Thomas Beecham,  Nils Grevillius,  Sir John Barbirolli,  Arturo Toscanini  ... 
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  • 41.
    Lalo: Symphonie Espagnole; Vieuxtemps, Saint-Saens / Mintz
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94070 Release Date: 05/04/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henri Vieuxtemps,  Edouard Lalo,  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Shlomo Mintz
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 42.
    Ravel: Tzigane; Saint-Saens: Violin Concerto / Szeryng
    Label: Philips Silverline Classics   Catalog: 420887 Release Date: 04/08/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Maurice Ravel
    Performer:  Henryk Szeryng
    Conductor:  Edouard Van Remoortel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Monte Carlo Opera Orchestra
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  • 43.
    The Magic Of The Violin / Grumiaux, Szeryng, Bobesco, Bernard
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 420818 Release Date: 04/08/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Tommaso Antonio Vitali  ... 
    Performer:  Arthur Grumiaux,  Claire Bernard,  Jacques Genty,  Lola Bobesco  ... 
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink,  Manuel Rosenthal,  Clair Gibaut,  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Lamoureux Concerts Association Orchestra,  Monte Carlo National Opera Orchestra  ... 
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  • 44.
    Virtuoso Violin Concertos /  Ruggiero Ricci
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4802083 Release Date: 03/16/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Camille Saint-SaŽns  ... 
    Performer:  Ruggiero Ricci
    Conductor:  Oivin Fjeldstad,  Sir Malcolm Sargent,  Piero Gamba,  Anatole Fistoulari
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 45.
    Best Violin 100
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 58521 Release Date: 01/26/2010   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Vittorio Monti,  Fritz Kreisler,  Pablo de Sarasate  ... 
    Performer:  Tasmin Little,  John Lenehan,  Leon Pommers,  Nathan Milstein  ... 
    Conductor:  Felix Slatkin,  Alceo Galliera,  Iain Sutherland,  Leonard Slatkin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Europa Galante,  Virtuosi,  Hollywood Bowl Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $21.99
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  • 46.
    Icon - Nathan Milstein - Aristocrat Of The Violin
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 98667 Release Date: 10/20/2009   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Fritz Kreisler,  Ottokar NovŠcek,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Nathan Milstein
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  • 47.
    300 Years Of St. Petersburg - Gala Concert / Temirkanov, Netrebko, Hvorostovsky [Blu-ray]
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2053404 Release Date: 09/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Dmitri Shostakovich,  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Maurice Ravel,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Viktor Tretyakov,  Eliso Virsaladze,  Anna Netrebko,  Dmitri Hvorostovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Yuri Temirkanov,  Nikolai Alekseev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra
    Blu-ray Video: $39.99
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  • 48.
    The Best Of Joshua Bell
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001337202 Release Date: 09/22/2009   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Gabriel Faurť,  Pablo de Sarasate,  Henri Wieniawski  ... 
    Performer:  Joshua Bell,  Olli Mustonen,  Jacques Thibaud,  Samuel Sanders  ... 
    Conductor:  Andrew Litton,  Christoph von DohnŠnyi,  Peter Maag
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra
    Recommendation
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  • 49.
    Jascha Heifetz Greatest Hits
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 742202 Release Date: 06/23/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-SaŽns,  Franz Waxman,  Erich Wolfgang Korngold,  Pablo de Sarasate  ... 
    Performer:  Jascha Heifetz,  Brooks Smith,  Emanuel Bay,  ArpŠd SŠndor
    Conductor:  William Steinberg,  Donald Voorhees,  Alfred Wallenstein,  Fritz Reiner  ... 
    CD: $8.99
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  • 50.
    Thibaud Plays French Music - Lalo, Chausson, Saint-saens
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 2082 Release Date: 05/12/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edouard Lalo,  Ernest Chausson,  Camille Saint-SaŽns
    Performer:  Jacques Thibaud
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  EugŤne Bigot,  Pierre Monteux
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