40 years ago give or take

Charles Gounod
Charles Gounod was a french composer of some note (bad musical pun) who didn't write a huge amount of music that you know of but did compose a couple barn burner operas - Faust being the most famous.  In that work he wrote some incidental music and if you remember your films, in the escape scene in Papillon (Hoffman, McQueen 1973), the inmate orchestra was playing that music. Another piece you might recognize was the "Funeral March of the Marionette" that became the theme song for the old Alfred Hitchcock TV series.

In the late 70s (1970s that is!) one of the local TV stations in Lexington regularly did little features on our Youth Music Society and one fine day asked for about 8 minutes of music.  I had some super players at the time so we played the first movement of a "Petite Symphony" for 9 players.  It went perfectly.  One of the french horns, Richard Deane now associate principal of the New York Philharmonic, spent the night at my house as he was from fairly far away and we talked late about music and things. When I saw him at a philharmonic concert last spring he remembered the piece and the performance. How very nice, gentle, and emotional. 

Anyway, I digress. Gounod wrote this petite symphony and it is really very sweet, pleasant music.  It is very "French" in sound and feel, great tunes and just very, very charming.