A pupil of Camille Saint-Saëns, he served as the organist of Saint-Augustin Church in Paris for 62 years. He became widely known as a teacher and his output as a composer was considerable. Renowned as an expert improviser, he also founded his own music school. (His nephew-by-marriage, Leon Boëllmann, became another fine organist and composer for the organ, whose death at the very young age of 35 was a severe loss to French music.)
The 10 pièces pour orgue (composed 1890) are Gigout's most celebrated compositions. They include the Toccata in B minor, his best-known creation, which turns up as a frequent encore at organ recitals. Also fairly often played, and to be found in the same collection, is a Scherzo in E major. Other notable pieces by Gigout are Grand Choeur Dialogué and Marche Religieuse. Gigout's works are now available on several commercial recordings.