Chabrier was heralded by the young generation of composers in France, particularly by Debussy, Ravel and Poulenc, as the founder of the French Modern. He achieved resounding success with his orchestra rhapsody Espaņa upon returning from his trip to Spain. Riding on this success, he composed the Habanera in 1885 which was met with equal enthusiasm. The piece was soon circulated in various arrangements. Chabrier himself transcribed the piece for orchestra in 1889.