My Alto and Bass Flute Retreat is now focusing on chamber music and I would like to share my list of favorite ensemble pieces for low flutes. Many c flute pieces work well with the warmer, richer tone of the low flutes and composers are beginning to write for ensembles of low flutes with great success.
Most works listed here were originally for c flutes. An * denotes pieces that were originally written for low flutes.
Each entry follows this pattern:
Composer; Title; arranger/transcriber; instrumentation; publisher
*Albert, Adrienne; Three for Two; alto flute/bass flute, contrabass flute; www.adriennealbert.com
Bach, J.S.; Four Bach Fugues; arr. Potter; 2 altos, or 2 basses, or c flute and alto, or c flute and bass, or alto and bass); Falls House Press.
Classical Pop Duets; arr. Potter; 2 altos or 2 basses; Kevin Mayhew. A collection of 20 well known classical pieces most of which work for alto or bass.
*Cohen, Jonathan; Just Below the Rainbow; 7 duets for all combinations of alto, bass, contrabass and c flute. Falls House Press.
Flute Sessions – a collection of duets, trios and quartets; Shawnee Press. Favorites in the book: Stravinsky Pastorale, Purcell Canon, Handel March, Brahms Lament, Swing! (Low Sweet. . .), Ravel Pavane.
*Hogenhuis, Jelle; Elegia; alto flute, bass flute; NFA Library.
Mower, Mike; Blowing a Storm; 2 altos or 2 basses; Itchy Fingers. 2 favorites in collection - When the Bough Breaks (2 altos or 2 basses) and Pizza Delivery Boy (2 altos).
Telemann; 6 Canonic Sonatas; 2 alto flutes or 2 bass flutes; many publishers. An alto and bass combination would work if you transposed one of the parts.
Beethoven; Grand Trio op. 87 – Finale; arr. Andraud; 3 altos; Southern Music
Boismortier, J.B.; Sonata (found in Easy Trios for Flutes); 3 altos or 3 basses; Edition Musica Budapest
Boismortier, J.B.; Sonata op. 7, no. 1; 3 altos; Boosey & Hawkes
*Gunn, David; Alt Basalt; 2 altos, 1 bass; www.davidgunn.com
Simaku, Thoma; From Across the Sea; 3 altos or 3 basses; Emerson Edition
Ukranian Folk Song; Carol of the Bells; arr. Christensen; 3 altos; Kendor Music
Zempleni, Laszlo; Trio for Flutes; 3 altos; Musica Budapest
*Dunleavy, Houston; Music for Foul Play #4; alto flute, bass flute, contrabass flute, sub contrabass flute; Nat'l Library of Australia #4817372
Flute Sessions – a collection of duets, trios and quartets; Shawnee Press. My favorites: Stravinsky Pastorale, Purcell Canon, Handel March, Brahms Lament, Swing! (Low Sweet . .) Ravel Pavane.
Quartet Repertoire; trans. Voxman; 4 altos; Rubank. My favorites: Here is A Fish Fat and Fine, Festival, Debussy Sarabande, Haydn Andante, Dvorak Sparrow's Party.
Telemann, G.P.; Concerto for Four Flutes; arr. Bailey; 3 altos, 1 bass; Falls House Press. Read flutes 1, 2 and 3 on altos down on octave on Grave mvmt., transpose flute 4 for bass.
Telemann, G.P.; La Caccia; 4 altos or 4 basses; Edition Berben
Five or more:
Boismortier, J.B.; Concertos for Five Flutes; 5 altos, or 4 altos and 1 bass (transpose part). Various Publishers. There are a total of six concertos for this combination.
*Holmberg, Pat; Aspen Leaf Rag and Fugue; 6 basses; Voice of the Rockies. Also works for 6 altos or 6 c flutes. voiceoftherocki.lmsstores.com/m_19.asp?c=43&pa=m_19
* Molnar-Suhajda, Alexandra; Voices from the Deep; 3 altos, 2 basses, contrabass and other assorted optional low flutes; www.flute.net
Silesian Folk Song; Fairest Lord Jesus; arr. Holcombe; 5 altos, 1 bass or 4 altos, 2 basses (transpose parts); Musicians Publications.
Watts, Issac; My Shepherd Will Supply My Need; arr. Rice-Young; 4 altos, 1 bass (transpose part); ALRY Publications.
*Ziegler, Matthias; Low Flutes at High Tides; 4 alto flutes, 2 bass flutes (or bass and contra alto), contrabass flute. www.matthias-ziegler.ch
A list of solo pieces and other chamber music for alto and bass can be found on the National Flute Association's website www.nfaonline.org/Stage-and-Studio/Low-Flutes/. The list was compiled by the NFA's Low Flutes committee.