Are you a flute choir director tired of searching for good flute choir music? You don’t have to waste hours looking for repertoire.
Consider some of my best tips for how to find good pieces for your flute choir to perform.
What Is a Flute Choir?
A flute choir is a medium-large ensemble full of flutes. It can include flutes as high as the piccolo and as low as the contrabass or even double contrabass flute.
However, the most common members include the piccolo, C flute, alto flute, and bass flute. Flute choirs are becoming more and more common these days at the educational, community, and even pro levels.
How to Choose Flute Choir Music
If you direct (or want to direct) a flute choir, you need to know how to choose the right music. Here are some things to keep in mind when programming your next concert.
Consider the Ensemble Level
One of the first things to determine is the level of the collective group as well as individual players. If you’re directing a flute choir for students, you may want to choose easier pieces.
On the other hand, if there are multiple professional flutists involved, you can play harder repertoire. For community groups, find a balance so that no one is overwhelmed or left feeling bored.
If you want to do harder stuff to challenge advanced players, you can even create small groups. That way, they still get a challenge, but you don’t push away beginners who want to play.
Estimate the Size of the Group
You may also want to get an idea of how many players will perform on a concert. Some flute choir pieces have only a few parts, while others may have close to a dozen.
If you have a smaller group, you may not have enough people for everyone to share a part. So you’ll want to ensure stronger players are on parts that they have to play alone.
Knowing the size can also help you assign parts, regardless of how big your flute choir is. That way, all of the parts will be distributed equally.
Think About Instrumentation
Another thing to keep in mind is the instrumentation of the flute choir. Most groups have access to piccolo, C flute, alto, and bass.
Some groups may have access to a contrabass flute, but that’s still relatively rare. And for high school groups, they may not always have access to a bass flute.
Make sure you choose pieces that will have a part for everyone. Then, you won’t have to worry about editing the piece to make it work for your group.
(Pro tip: commissioning music is a great way to guarantee it will suit your flute choir’s instrumentation!)
Don’t Forget the Season
Next, you’ll want to think about the date of your next concert. Obviously, most December concerts will include some or all holiday music.
If you have a concert in October, you can program some spookier music to celebrate Halloween. And in the spring, maybe you play some happier tunes.
Setting a concert theme can be a great way to help you choose flute choir music. Then, you can make sure each piece suits the theme.
Take Member Suggestions
As the flute choir director, you have the final say in what music you play. However, if you’re stuck, don’t be afraid to ask the members for suggestions.
Some people may know of pieces that you wouldn’t know of or pieces you wouldn’t have thought about. That can be a great way to expand your flute choir programming.
Let members know you reserve the right to decline their suggestions. But if you’re ever in need of more ideas, ask the people who will end up playing with you.
Start With Your Library
Of course, a great place to find ideas for a concert is to look at your flute choir music. Consider what you own that you either haven’t played or that you haven’t played in multiple years.
Add some of those pieces into your rotation so that you can make use of what you have. And if you know other members have flute choir music on hand, ask for their libraries.
Then, you can find a variety of pieces without necessarily having to spend a ton of money.
Shop for Existing Music
Next, you may want to break out your wallet but want some music right away. The best option is to look for flute choir music that’s already been published.
I have a growing library of digital downloads, including sheet music for flute ensembles. Take a look at some titles to fill up your next concert.
You can find a lot of good titles online through flute and music shops. However, check out the websites of publishers and individual composers and arrangers.
Commission a New Work
When all else fails, commission a composer or arranger to write a new work. You can ensure the work will be of the right instrumentation and level for your ensemble.
Plus, if you schedule the commission right, it should be done in time for your next concert.
As the commissioning group, you’ll often get exclusive performance rights for a set period. Then, you can make sure you’re the premiering flute choir.
Where to Find Flute Choir Music
Now, to help choose good flute choir music, you need to know where to find it. As mentioned, you can search online.
Look at sheet music and flute retailers to get a good selection. Alternatively, if you know you want music by a specific composer, head to their website.
You can also shop for music in person at a local music shop, depending on their selection. If you’re traveling to a flute festival, you should also check out the exhibit hall to find new music.
Hire a Flute Choir Music Composer
Choosing flute choir music is crucial for keeping your members engaged and for attracting a large audience to your concert.
If you can’t find the right piece, it may be time to commission a new work. Learn more about my composing and arranging services.