(I don't say this pejoratively. I like it when composers work other pieces into their work as homages. Beethoven used what's now known as "The Bear Went Over the Mountain" in his Wellington's Victory. That hardly diminishes Beethoven.)
I just now have become even more convinced that composer Jean-Michael Schonberg likes to work classical music into his pieces. The other day I was listening to "Gavotte with Six Variations" by Jean-Philippe Rameau -- and it's clearly the inspiration for the song "Castle in the Cloud" from Boubil-Schonberg's Les Miserables.
And given that they are French as was Rameau, it makes it even more likely that a trained musician would know his country's musical heritage.
For those who might forget how "Castle in the Cloud" goes, here's a short version --
And here is Rameau's Gavotte. No need to listen to the whole thing, only about the first minute. After all this is "Six Variations," so after the first go-round the melody gets deeply adapted. The piece is written for harpsichord, but this is an orchestral arrangement, which I decided to use since it more closely approximates the sound of the stage musical. And to be clear, it's not the full piece of Rameau music that's the basis of the song, but the main theme, which Schonberg then built on.
To refresh your memory, here's the original Jean Valjean, Colm Wilkinson singing "Bring Him Home" from Les Miserables.
(Side note: in a nice touch, when they made the movie of Les Miserables the filmmakers had to good sense and decency to get Colm Wilkinson into the film. He played the priest at the beginning who takes in Jean Valjean as an escaped prisoner.)
And here is the "Humming Chorus" from Madame Butterfly.
I am absolutely convinced that this is the inspiration for "Bring Him Home." Not just because of how similar they sound (listen particularly at the 40-second mark), or the Madame Butterfly connection, but how the last notes as it builds to a high crescendo finish spot-on the same.