1857 - 1944
Cécile Chaminade began composing in the mid-1860's and wrote approximately 400 compositions. Much of her music included her popular piano works and melodies; almost all were published. A recital she gave in April 1878 was a model for the typical Chaminade performances that became popular twenty years later; programs consisting entirely of her own works, performed by the composer. The Piano Trio No. 1, op. 11 was first featured at her concert in February 1880. During this period she wrote orchestral music, an opera, and many of the character pieces for piano for which she became best known. Her music was very popular in England and in the United States where many "Chaminade clubs" were formed around 1900. She toured extensively; most of her recitals where were usually sold out. One of her many awards was the French Legion d'Honneur in 1913, an irony because although she was the first woman composer to receive the award, her music was practically ignored in France.