The Titanic Days – Rhapsody for Snare Drum and Percussion Ensemble by Christopher Deane is an octet for percussion ensemble featuring keyboard percussion instruments, amplified piano, timpani, percussion and a featured soloist who plays three snare drums of various dimensions. The title is borrowed from a painting by the Belgian surrealist painter Rene Magritte. The Titanic Days does not attempt to represent in music what Magritte painted, however it does borrow a kind of dark energy that is depicted in that painting.
The music also draws on the lessons learned from the tragic sinking of the famous cruise liner (The Titanic). The solo snare drum part contains a brief musical quote of the traditional rudimental snare drum solo, The Downfall of Paris.
The Titanic Days was written upon the request of Professor Jon Lee, Director of the Southern Methodist University Meadows Percussion Ensemble, in honor of retired SMU faculty member and former Principal Percussionist of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Doug Howard.