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.
The full title of this work is "Minuetto (Per un Organo di Salone), and it is dedicated "To E. M. Hill, Esq.", and was published by Novello.
While the "salon characteristics" are definitely present, particularly in the lovely "trumpet solo" in the central section, this work fits very nicely into a more "dignified" style, not just by using more organ, but in the approach to the performance.
The "trumpet solo" that I mentioned in the middle section is performed on the Horn 8' of the Swell. This stop, heroic in chorus, also has a fine, orchestral nature, and this is shown to good effect in this section.
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! :-)
The score for the "Minuetto" is attached below, as well as the only likeness that I've ever found of Édouard Silas, a drawing by Alexandre Collette.
MUCH MORE "unknown and long-forgotten" music is on the way! :-)