Childhood: Six Progressive Duets For Flute
It’s often hard to find music that students can play as conceived, because so much of flute literature is for flute and piano. The great thing about duets is that students can learn them in full with their teachers. They can practice ensemble–leadership, pitch, and phrasing–within the context of a weekly lesson, without having to find a pianist and schedule rehearsals.
The great thing about these duets is that they’re tuneful and fun, covering a range of playing levels, and the parts are equal–meaning there’s not one interesting part and one boring accompaniment. They’re constantly trading roles. They can also be used in a contest situation as long as there is no requirement to work from a prescribed list.
- “Night Lights” (G minor/G major, including F#) is for relatively new players with a more challenging second part meant to be played by the teacher.
- “Swing Sets” (Eb Major) is accessible to intermediate (i.e. upper middle school) players.
- “Bike Riding” (G Major) has more rhythmic interest and challenging accidentals, making it appropriate for the advancing intermediate player.
- “Afternoon Tea” (A Major) is very accessible except for the key, so it makes a good brain stretch for the junior high player.
- “Superheroes” (G Major) is in 6/8 with hemiolas and covers a range from low G to high A.
- “Roller Coasters” (F Major-Bb Major) involves shifting time signatures, including 5/8, and technical passages to help high school students develop their technique.
“I performed “Childhood Suite” on a recital at Slippery Rock University, where I teach. My students raved about the piece, and many said it was their favorite of all the pieces on the program. I recommend adding a slideshow of pictures of children representing the movements. We did that and it was such a hit!” Kathy Melago, Assistant Professor of Music Education, Slippery Rock University
“These duets are the best thing ever.” Janelle Lutz, Columbia, Mo., piano teacher and parent of beginning flute student.