Édouard Silas (b. Amsterdam, Holland, Aug. 22nd, 1827) studied in Paris with Kalkbrenner, François Benoist and Halévy; at the Paris Conservatoire, gaining first prize for organ, 1849. He moved to London in 1850 and became Organist of the Catholic Chapel, Kingston-on-Thames. He was a professor at the Guildhall School of Music, London, and composed cantatas, church music, organ pieces, orchestral and chamber music, piano pieces, songs, etc. He died in 1909.
This little nicety is very "pure" in its 19th century shape and details, and I've played it in what I hope is a "straightforward" (but with "expression") rendition. I did not want to fuss it up, and I think it came out well.
The main solo is played upon the Hohl Flöte (Harmonic Flute) of the Great Organ.
There is definitely the element of the salon in this, and you'll find that there a few little "technical quirks" hidden in there as well.
The great English organist (now 100!), Francis Jackson, has been somewhat of Silas exponent over the years, and I THINK he has played this piece.
If you like this, and want to hear the composer in a completely different showcase, you may wish to check out this amazing "March." I GUARANTEE that it will make you smile! :-)
To find the score for the march, use this link:
The score for the "Melody in E Minor" is attached below, as well as the only likeness that I've ever found of Édouard Silas, a drawing by Alexandre Collette.