Meditation from 'Thais' (Flute Feature). By Geoffrey Brand. Arranged by Geoffrey Brand. For Soloist(s) with Concert Band (Solo Flute, 2nd Flute, Oboe*, 1st Bb Clarinet, 2nd Bb Clarinet, 3rd Bb Clarinet, Bb Bass Clarinet*, Bassoon*, 1st Eb Alto Saxophone*, 2nd Eb Alto Saxophone*, Bb Tenor Saxophone*, Eb Baritone Saxophone*, 1st Bb Trumpet, 2nd Bb Trumpet, 1st F Horn, 2nd F Ho). Band Music. Grade 3. Score only.
The French composer, Jules Massenet benefited from having a musical mother who was his first teacher until, aged 11, he was accepted for the Paris Conservatoire.
Money was short, and as a student, Massenet earned a pittance amount playing the triangle at a theatre. Later, he was a drummer three nights a week at the Theatre-Lyrique which as well as providing a knowledge of instrumentation also developed a life-long appreciation of music for the theatre.
Massenet's romantic opera, Thais, was first produced in Paris in 1894. The story is set in Thebes, Egypt, where Thais, a beautiful courtesan, rules the city of Alexandria by the power of her charms.
In the Meditation, originally a violin solo accompanied by a small orchestra including two harps, Massenet vividly captures the sense of allure and charm with which Thais beguiles her suitors, her wiles personifying the struggle between the higher and the lower nature in the human race. A solo flute is featured in this arrangement.