Pierne’s full name was Henry Constant Gabriel Pierne.
Pierne was born at Metz, August 16, 1863, and studied music at the Conservatorie of Paris chiefly under Cesar Franck and Massenet.
He won the first medal for solfege in 1874, the first prize for piano in 1879, for organ in 1882 and for counterpoint and fugue in 1881.
In 1882 he also carried of the highest of all honors the Conservatoire has to bestow – the Prix de Rome.
He followed Cesar Franck as organist of Sainte Clotilde in 1890.
Pierne has written a number of dramatic and orchestral works of much intrinsic worth. The most famous of his larger compositions is probably his Children’s Crusade, which is one of the most important of recent French choral compositions. The work was written for the City of Paris competition of 1903, but failed to win the prize, however, was awarded the work in the following year.
Pierne’s smaller compositions have made his name familiar to all musicians, the most popular of his works being doubtless the Serenade for violin and piano.
Pierne’s lighter music is very graceful and there is no wonder that it is popular.
He succeeded Colonne as conductor of the Colonne Orchestra, and has recently attracted general notice by his generous treatment of Fanelli, the composer of genius who gave up composing twenty years ago through poverty.