Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns (1835–1921) was a French composer (a person who writes music) born in Paris. At the age of just two-and-a-half years old he began to study piano and composed his first piano piece at the age of only 3! He began performing publically 7 years later with a big concert in Paris. Not only a talented musician, Saint-Saëns was also a very gifted student. He studied both mathematics and natural sciences, winning first prize at the Conservatorie (a fancy French word for a school). Years later when Saint-Saëns grew-up, he became known as not only a great pianist but also a legendary organist and composer. He said he lived "in music like a fish in water." Maybe that is where he got the idea for The Carnival of the Animals!