Tony Bridgewater's 'Sonata For Flutes' was written in 2014-2015 for the UK based National Flute Orchestra, founded by Margaret Lowe in 2008, and was performed in Birmingham, England, conducted by the composer.
The piece is in three movements. The first is based around lively, dancing 7/8 rhythms, with playful changes in metre, and ideas thrown between the instruments in a busy texture. There is a slow, reflective middle section, much more serious in tone, featuring various flute solos. This gradually returns to the opening ideas of the movement in an abbreviated reprise, before the music ends, fading away into the distance, on the dancing rhythm of the opening.
The second movement is slow, and suggests a misty dawn landscape with its spare, calm texture. This is followed by a series of lonely solo flute melodies which gradually combine and build up into a rich, imitative texture. Tension and dissonance builds, but at the climax a solemn, low melody on bass and alto flute returns the music to a reprise of the first section, which ends very quietly and mysteriously.
The rousing final movement returns to the joyful dancing rhythms of the first, now based around 10/8 time. It is a rondo, with many playful variations of the returning theme shared between all of the flutes at each appearance, while contrasting episodes are a little more relaxed and lyrical. A final coda briefly reprises motifs from earlier in the piece, before building to an exciting conclusion.