"You have written a duet for a flute and clarinet for Dorus and Leroy. Won't you ask them to play it at one of my evenings?" The two great artists did not have to be urged. Then an unheard of thing happened. As he never had a written programme on such occasions, Rossini managed so that they believed that the duet was his own. It is easy to imagine the success of the piece under these conditions. When the encore was over, Rossini took me to the dining-room and made me sit near him, holding me by the hand so that I could not get away. A procession of fawning admirers passed in front of him. Ah! Master! What a masterpiece! Marvellous!
And when the victim had exhausted the resources of the language in praise, Rossini replied, quietly: "I
agree with you. But the duet wasn't mine ; it was written by this gentleman."