Gabriel Fauré was one of the most important French composers of his generation. Born in Pamiers in the south of France in 1845, Fauré was a talented musician from a young age, and was sent to the Ecole Niedermeyer music college in Paris at the age of nine. He trained to be an organist and choirmaster, studying with Camille Saint-Saëns, who was to become a lifelong friend and mentor. After graduating in 1865, Fauré worked as an organist and teacher, leaving him little time for composing.
Later in life, Fauré’s success as an organist afforded him time to vacation in the countryside, where he devoted his time to composition, eventually building up a reputation as a great composer both in his native country and in Britain. His music took longer to attain popularity elsewhere, but interest in his work has grown dramatically since his death. He has left a lasting legacy in his students, which include Maurice Ravel, Florent Schmitt, Charles Koechlin, Louis Aubert, Jean Roger-Ducasse, George Enescu, Paul Ladmirault, Alfredo Casella and Nadia Boulanger.