There are flute pieces that have stood the test of time and are still considered the "bread and butter" of the standard Classical flute repertoire. They were beautiful when they were composed and they're beautiful now, years and decades and centuries later.
Even though diversity and inclusion was less of a hot topic in Classical Music in the 20th Century, the composers on this list represent Jewish (Bloch), Queer (Barber) and monumental influences (Gaubert and Taffanel) to the flute's history and repertoire.
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1. Suite Modale by Ernest Bloch
"I like how each movement tells a different story. It also makes learning about different scales interesting!"
Four movements, can perform together or separately
Great for student recitals
Has fast, slow, pretty - everything in between
Great introduction for learning about scale modes (theory stuff)
2. Canzone by Samuel Barber
"This piece sounds like smooth, creamy peanut butter to my soul."
Short and sweet piece
Sharp key signature and complex-looking rhythms
Has low and high register melodies
Great for practicing legato and long phrases
3. Madrigal by Philippe Gaubert
"I like how flowy it is. It makes me think of wind in the trees."
Fast and slow sections that are "just right" and not too extreme
Easily identifiable scale patterns
More "crunchy" harmonies with piano that are still pretty
Explores sharp and flat accidentals
4. Andante Pastoral et Scherzettino by Paul Taffanel
"After getting past how scary it looks on paper, the melodies are gorgeous! I feel like I can play anything after learning this."
Two movements, can perform together or separately
Excellent choice for college auditions and student recitals
Challenges the player to be expressive in both rubato and strict tempo settings
Complex-looking rhythms and multiple time signature changes