Sheet Music: The Swan

TitleThe Swan
from The Carnival of the Animals
Alternate titlesLe Cygne from Le Carnaval des Animaux
ComposerCamille Saint-Saëns (1835–1921)
InstrumentationFlute and Piano
KeyG major
Time signature6/4
Tempo70 BPM
Performance time2:25
Difficulty levelintermediate
Download printable scorePDF Sheet Music (119 kB) (preview)
Download audio tracksMIDI (change tempo/key) MP3 (2 MB)
Play-along accompanimentMIDI (change tempo/key) MP3 (2 MB)
Date added2009-06-21
Last updated2009-06-21
Download popularity index☆☆☆☆☆ 25.9 (extremely popular)
Ballet excerpts, Dance tunes, Romantic


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Sunday 21 June 2009

Tune of the Day: The Swan

from Camille Saint-Saëns's “The Carnival of the Animals“
The Swan

“Le Cygne”, or “The Swan”, is the thirteenth movement of The Carnival of the Animals, an orchestral suite by Camille Saint-Saëns. The piece originally features a solo cello in tenor clef and two accompaniment pianos, in 6/4 time, with a key signature of G major. It makes large use of legato and slurring: the music should flow like a swan gliding through the water. Moreover, this piece is often played using much vibrato.

This is the only movement from The Carnival of the Animals that the composer would allow to be played in public during his lifetime as he thought the remaining movements were too frivolous and would damage his reputation as a serious composer.

“Le Cygne” is often known for the ballet The Dying Swan, performed by Anna Pavlova, which was choreographed to its music about twenty years later, in 1905.

Other Movements from the same Work

7.Aquarium Flute & Piano
10.Aviary Flute solo
12.Fossils Flute duet
13.The Swan Flute & Piano
14.Final Flute solo