noun \ˈskert-(ˌ)sō\

: a lively, humorous piece of music that is played quickly

plural scherzos or scher·zi \-(ˌ)sē\

Full Definition of SCHERZO

:  a sprightly humorous instrumental musical composition or movement commonly in quick triple time

Origin of SCHERZO

Italian, literally, joke, from scherzare
First Known Use: 1852


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Musical movement in rapid triple time; it replaced the minuet in genres such as the symphony, sonata, and string quartet in the 19th century. The name was first used for light vocal and instrumental pieces of the Baroque era. It formally often resembles the minuet, being in rounded binary form and having a contrasting trio section between two statements of the scherzo proper, but its tempo is often much faster and its style may range from playful to vehement or grotesque.


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