recitative

noun
rec·​i·​ta·​tive | \ ˌre-sə-tə-ˈtēv How to pronounce recitative (audio) , ˌre-stə- \

Definition of recitative

1 : a rhythmically free vocal style that imitates the natural inflections of speech and that is used for dialogue and narrative in operas and oratorios also : a passage to be delivered in this style

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Other Words from recitative

recitative adjective

Examples of recitative in a Sentence

the second recitative of Act II The opera made use of recitative.
Recent Examples on the Web Her entrance to the short second recitative was particularly noteworthy, powerful without being overbearing. Matthew J. Palm, orlandosentinel.com, "One for the peasants and more at 86th Bach Festival | Review," 22 Feb. 2021 His soliloquy consists of a grim prelude, a spacious recitative and a grand aria in the standard two-part (slow-fast) form. Will Crutchfield, New York Times, "A Beethoven Aria Was Lost. I Filled In the Missing Pages.," 21 Feb. 2020 Holding it all together was conductor Harry Bicket, who also played harpsichord for the recitatives. Heidi Waleson, WSJ, "‘Eurydice’ and ‘Agrippina’ Reviews: Voices Lost and Found," 7 Feb. 2020 Hugo Hymas was responsible for both the Evangelist’s zealous recitatives and the first choir’s tenor part, and rose admirably to his Herculean task. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, "Bushels of Bach at Boston Early Music Festival," 12 June 2019 Thanks to the conductor Ryan Brown and the four singers, the recitatives between the set pieces stayed suspenseful; the act took us through quite a spectrum. Alastair Macaulay, New York Times, "Review: Lafayette’s Double Bill of Baroque Opera and Dance Drama," 4 Feb. 2018 Media: Amber Elliot, Houston Chronicle Addressing the crowd in Norma’s first lines of dramatic recitative, Monastyrska got off to a rough start, her tone turning harsh at the top of her range and not ideally centered on pitch. Eric Skelly, Houston Chronicle, "Review: HGO’s ‘Norma’ is grand, but lead can’t ‘Let It Go’," 1 May 2018 Soprano Golda Schultz was frankly perfect in her recitatives and arias. Special To The Plain Dealer, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Orchestra pulls off a save after illness strikes singers in Haydn's 'The Seasons' (review)," 19 Jan. 2018 Addressing the crowd in Norma’s first lines of dramatic recitative, Monastyrska got off to a rough start, her tone turning harsh at the top of her range and not ideally centered on pitch. Eric Skelly, Houston Chronicle, "Review: HGO’s ‘Norma’ is grand, but lead can’t ‘Let It Go’," 1 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'recitative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of recitative

1654, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for recitative

Italian recitativo, from recitare to recite, from Latin

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Time Traveler for recitative

Time Traveler

The first known use of recitative was in 1654

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Statistics for recitative

Last Updated

9 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Recitative.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/recitative. Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for recitative

recitative

noun

English Language Learners Definition of recitative

music : a passage in vocal music (such as an opera) in which the words are sung in a way that resembles speech

More from Merriam-Webster on recitative

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about recitative

Comments on recitative

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