concerto grosso


concerto gros·​so -ˈgrō-(ˌ)sō How to pronounce concerto grosso (audio) -ˈgrȯ- How to pronounce concerto grosso (audio)
plural concerti grossi -ˈgrō-(ˌ)sē How to pronounce concerto grosso (audio)
: a baroque orchestral composition featuring a small group of solo instruments contrasting with the full orchestra

Examples of concerto grosso in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web On March 2, the ensemble finds a beautiful metaphor for its organizational model in the concerto grosso, a Baroque form in which multiple soloists spin glittery lines in dialogue with a larger unit of players. The New Yorker, 23 Feb. 2024 The concert showcases the concerto grosso form with works by Purcell, Corelli, Vivaldi and Handel. Linda McIntosh, San Diego Union-Tribune, 2 Feb. 2024 Bach expounded on the typical form of a concerto grosso—in which a small string contingent share soloist duties against a larger band—by including brass and woodwinds. The New Yorker, 19 Nov. 2021 Smith, who grew up in Albany Park, says the gnashing, relentless work is loosely inspired by a Baroque concerto grosso, but the similarities mostly end with its ensemble size and three-movement structure. Hannah Edgar,, 2 Nov. 2021 Scored for chamber orchestra, the piece functions as something of a concerto grosso. Peter Dobrin,, 6 May 2018 His knack for keeping textures spotless, rhythms sharply etched, yielded an idiomatic rendition of Bartok’s mid-20th-century take on the baroque concerto grosso. John Von Rhein,, 3 Nov. 2017 As the piece proceeds, players return to their other instruments — strings, clarinets, flutes, cello, and marimba — and a kind of concerto grosso emerges. Peter Dobrin,, 20 Oct. 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'concerto grosso.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Italian, literally, big concerto

First Known Use

1776, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of concerto grosso was in 1776

Dictionary Entries Near concerto grosso

Cite this Entry

“Concerto grosso.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2024.

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