G. Henle Verlag


Saint-Saëns: Carnival of the Animals

Format Descriptions
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    • Composer: Camille Saint-Saëns
    • Editor: Ernst-Günter Heinemann
    • Format: Set of Parts
    • Instrumentation: Cello, Viola, Glass Harmonica (Piano), Violin I, Violin II, Piano I, Piano II, Xylophone, Double Bass, Flute, Clarinet
    • ISMN: 979-020180939-7
    • Size: 9.3 x 12.2 inches
    • Urtext / Critical Edition

    Written in March 1886 as a humorous occasional work for the traditional carnival concert organized by his cellist friend Charles-Joseph Lebouc, the Carnival of the Animals was so successful that Saint-Saëns banned performances and publication soon afterwards. He was worried that this "grand zoological fantasy" - consisting of 14 short individual pieces for eleven instruments - might overshadow his serious works. Yet only five months after the composer's death, it appeared in print after all, beginning its worldwide victory march - in its original setting as well as in numerous arrangements.

    Thus, the Carnival did in fact arguably become the most popular work by this French composer and, owing to its musical originality, it is also a favorite in music lessons or for school orchestra performances.