Massenet was a fluent and skilful orchestrator, and willingly provided ballet episodes for his operas, incidental music for plays, and a one-act stand-alone ballet for Vienna (Le carillon
, 1892). Macdonald remarks that Massenet's orchestral style resembled that of Delibes
, "with its graceful movement and bewitching colour", which was highly suited to classical French ballet. The Méditation
for solo violin and orchestra, from Thaïs
, is possibly the best known non-vocal piece by Massenet, and appears on many recordings. Another popular stand-alone orchestral piece from the operas is Le dernier sommeil de la Vierge
from La Vierge
, which has featured on numerous discs since the middle of the 20th century.