Jen Cluff ~ Best flute books for students (cheapest)

Canadian Flutist and Teacher

Flute sheet music purchases for the budget-minded

Good links for flute teachers:

See all flute books for Abrsm 2008-2013 exams in the U.K.

Ear-training theory course for children/adults:
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Good flute book article: New Books for Flute by Sally Adams:

Books for Beginners:

Best Books (prices in Canadian dollars):

 8-9 yrs. old and younger:

 Liz Goodwin: The Fife Book. The best possible book for very small children; starts with only B, A, and G, and has funny cartoons. Moves slowly, teaches how to read music; big pictures, very pleasant simple tunes playable on fife or flute. $25 

All ages: Most attractive books for beginner fun in lessons:

  Malcolm Pollock: Abracadabra Flute with CD. This is one incredibly good book. Starts with B, A, and G, and then adds more notes one at a time, with playalong CD with right/left channels for piano accompaniment. Fun pictures, great flute playing on CD. One of the best, most fun books for young beginners I've seen to date!!! $23

Best found to date: Flute book 1 of the Boosey Woodwind Method (Hal Leonard publishers in U.S.) - this well written beginner flute book has a CD and all the tunes are exciting. Very appealing layout and great "how to read music" exercises starting with B, A, G. Lots of clapping games, echo games, puzzles, questions, and compositional ideas, as well as duets, trios and a strong emphasis on rhythm.  Playalong tracks have very attractive and fun tunes from around the world, most in a popular, contemporary and jazzy style. Overall, a very strong pedagogical approach to teaching flute. Brilliant, even! You can listen to some of the tracks at the Boosey site under sound samples. $17.

10 yrs. old and up: Basic beginner books:

Trevor Wye: Beginner Books for the Flute- Volume 1 & 2 (can be avail. with CD) Publisher: Novello $25 These are fine books, and the pedagogy is extremely well thought out, but only a certain percentage of students tend to finish these books, as they are not as attracted to the tunes.


NOVICE LEVEL FLUTISTS (can read music somewhat):


Karen Smithson: Playing the Flute Volumes 2-5 and book of piano accompaniments  $28-35 per volume. I think that flute teachers should buy and use all six volumes, getting the student to purchase one a year, or two if speedily progressing. On a budget? If you only buy one volume, buy the score-form piano accompaniments book in order to get the hundreds of useful novice level pieces for flute and piano. Look for Smithson flute books at: or

Age 15 and up:
Wagner Flute Method and Altes Flute Method (vol. 1 & 2) plus about 200 other books of etudes/studies/duets etc. all on two cd-roms: . Wagner and Altes can be just what you're looking for, or, they can be real snoozers as far as method books go; very old-world. But they're bascially FREE when you purchase the CD-rom with all the other great etudes and duets in pdf on the same disc. Print out at home; and you'll have enough novice to intermediate/advanced sheetmusic for two decades for the average student.

The first CD-rom is called "The Ultimate Sheetmusic for Flute - Flute Solos". The second CD-rom is called: "The Ultimate Sheetmusic for Flute- Methods, Ensembles and Studies" by It's well worth owning both, as each is only $20.

Trevor Wye: Practice Book for the Flute - Volume One - TONE -  Order this book along with the accompaning tone CD. (this volume without CD  is also contained in Omnibus edition below....)


For self-teaching adults:
Howard Harrison: How to Play the Flute Publisher: Elm Tree Books; ISBN 0-241-10876-4 - this is mostly text and explanation but with plenty of attractive tunes. Book spine may have to be cracked to lay flat; try having it spiral bound at a local copy shop. $10.


INTERMEDIATE Level flute students:


Trevor Wye: Practice Books for the Flute Omnibus Edition, Books 1-5 Tone, Technique, Articulation, Intonation, Vibrato, Breathing, Scales. Publisher: Novello

If on a budget:
Indispensible Scales, Exercises and Etudes for the Developing Flutist by Dona Gilliam & Mizzy McCaskill. Publisher: Mel Bay

Other Beginner Books that are useful:


If you are on the world's tiny-est budget see these books:
Howard Harrison How to Play the Flute ($10)
For adults learning to teach: (some antique ideas need correction in this guide, but mostly good:)

  Novello: Trevor Wye "Beginner Book of the Flute Vol. I   contains most of the useful info. including diagrams and introducing one note at a time including sharps. Stays in low register for most of the book which can be good. $15


Take Up the Flute - Books 1 & 2, published by Chester. See samples.

Karen Smithson Piano Accompaniments for "Playing the Flute series. There are hundreds of classical and folk tunes arranged for flute and piano in this one volume. Great for junior recitals. High quality arrangements in score form. All the pieces appear in the five volume student books, but here are printed as piano scores in one large volume. Good deal for the price as you are sure to find at least 70% of the tunes gorgeous. Avail from  $28

For beginner flute duets click here.

For more beginner books click here.


Novice level flute fun books:

For Novices- fun books:

Easy level pieces: Celtic Music for Flute with CD by Jessica Walsh or any of the flute & guitar books by Walsh at .You can hear MP3s of the pieces there also. And you can make duets out of them (along with CD, or with your teacher) by checking out the Walsh duet method here. $35


Claire McKenna: 110 of Ireland's Best Tin Whistle Tunes, Volume 1.  Although the fingerings on the first few pages could possibly be confusing for young beginners, as they are tin whistle fingerings, the rest of the tunes (with guitar chords) are given without fingerings. A lovely collection of music for the family flutist with violin or guitar playing siblings or parents. Gorgeous tunes and lots of them, clearly printed. $20. 

For more novice flute books click here.

Novice Level Etudes:

Cheapest: Southern: Melodious & Progressive Studies Book I. Cavally  $15


Cheapest: Mel Bay: "Indispensible Scales, Exercises and Etudes" by McCaskill $12

Novice level pieces: Any playalong book by Jessica Walsh (view and hear samples at ; create own duets by clicking here.) or

Cheapest: Rubank: Selected Duets for Flute Volume I or II Voxman $12

Fischer:36 Repertoire Pieces by Donald Peck $19  

You may also like the inexpensive flute CD by NAXOS that contains several of the repertoire pieces from the "36 Repertoire" above::

CD: "Dance of the Blessed Spirits" Naxos CD, flutist: Nora Shulman ($8) or

Cheapest: Rubank: Concert and Concert Collection for flute by Voxman $10

For novice duets click here.

For more novice books click here.

Good links for flute teachers:

See ALL FLUTE BOOKS for Abrsm exams in the U.K.

Eartraining theory course for children/adults: [404 Not Found]

Good flute book article: New Books for Flute by Sally Adams:



Trevor Wye Omnibus Edition "Practice Books for the Flute

This one volume includes: 1. Tone; 2.Technique; 3 Articulation; 4.Intonation & Vibrato; 5. Breathing & Scales.] This book is $60 Cdn. Better than $22 for each book separately, or

Cheapest: Mel Bay: "Indispensible Scales, Exercises and Etudes" McCaskill or

Chester : "The Flute Player's Companion, Volume 1" by Edward Blakeman (see book)

Cheapest for how many books you get on print-out-able CD: The Ultimate Collection Cd-rom: Flute Methods and Ensembles."

This Cd-rom includes: Kohler- Romantic Etudes; J.S. Bach 24 Etudes; Andersen Op. 33 & Altes 26 Selected Etudes. See my fave repertoire list for thumbnail reviews of various items on this disc.. Contains duets and etudes from easy to virtuoso level. Bonus: Reichert's "Seven Daily Exercises, Altes teaching method, Wagner Method all included for $20 U.S. total shipping, GST etc. See

Intermediate level Pieces: Choose duets and solo collections listed on my 'Jen's Favourite Repertoire' page.

For individual pieces of flute & piano music, see my "Jen's fave" repertoire, and look for level B and up. Collections in book form with multiple pieces give you more solos with piano for the money.

For intermediate duets click here

For more Intermediate books click here.



Daily Exercises: Novello: Trevor Wye - Complete Daily Exercises for the Flute

(this is a huge collection of all traditional daily exercise books in one volume) or

Walfrid Kujala "The Flutist's Vade Mecum [order from] or

Taffenal & Gaubert:Seventeen Daily Exercises (small book format-Leduc)


Schirmer: "The Flutist's Detache Book (very advanced ) by Robert Stallman or

Cheapest:Rubank: "Selected Studies for Flute"Voxman (includes scales, thirds etc. in back)

Advanced Repertoire:

See my "Jen's fave" repertoire for level C to D solos, duets, Orch excerpts or see my webpage for lists of the Royal Conservatory Grade 9 & 10 Syllabus Flute Solos ( found online under "repertoire" on my webpage,) or simply buy The Ultimate Cd-rom of Flute Solos; see my webpage & link to table of contents at click on Woodwinds, then FLUTE, then "Flute solos" cd-rom.



See my favourite repertoire list here plus....

Still more books that might interest you if you are working on your own over the summer, taking a year off from lessons, and/or wish to supplement the books you already own (have some money to spend.):

Beginners: RCM Grade I-II

  • Take Up The Flute Repertoire Book One with CD - By Chris Morgan/James Galway
  • Abracadabra Flute Duets:
  • "How to Play the Flute" by Howard Harrison
  • Trevor Wye: "Very Easy Baroque Album" or Romantic or Classical same series for flute/piano

Novices: RCM Grade III-V

  • French Pieces for Flute and Piano~ Pub: Mel Bay 95295
  • Favourite Celtic Melodies by Sarah Watts ~ Pub: Mel Bay
  • Wagner Flute Method and Altes Flute Method (vol. 1 & 2) plus about 200 other books of etudes/studies/duets etc. all on one cd-rom: for Flute: "The Ultimate Sheetmusic for Flute - Methods, Ensembles and Studies".
  • 125 Easy Classical Studies for flute ~ Pub: Universal UE16042

Intermediates: RCM Grade VI-VIII

  • The Physical Flute by Fiona Wilkinson
  • De La Sonorite by Marcel Moyse
  • 24 Short Concert Pieces, Southern Publishers.
    CD by Barbara Hopkins of first 15 of these pieces:
  • Flute Music of the Baroque ~ Pub: Schirmer
  • Vernon Hill: The Flute Player's Book with demo- CD [Everything you
    wanted to know about playing the flute.] See index of topics covered at;

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  • Robert Dick: Tone Development Through Extended Technique.

Advanced: RCM Grade IX to A.R.C.T.

  • Flute Music by French Composers ed: Louis Moyse Pub: Schirmer
  • Marcel Moyse's "Tone Development Through Interpretation"
  • Werner Richter: Conditioning Training for flutists. Publisher: Zimmerman. Avail at:
  • Marcel Moyse: "Exercises Journaliers" pub: Leduc
  • Jeanne Baxtresser's "Orchestral Excerpts for Flute" AND ALSO...
  • Jeanne Baxtresser's CD of Orchestral Excerpts for Flute: Summit

A thumbnail description of many of my top-pick Advanced Flutists' books and methods are all given here.

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