Definition of scherzo
: a sprightly humorous instrumental musical composition or movement commonly in quick triple time
Recent Examples of scherzo from the Web
Alsop drew gorgeous playing from the strings in the slow movement, vivid work from winds and brass in the scherzo and finale.
The second of two great septuagenarian pianists passing through New York this week brings with him an all-Chopin program, featuring two sets of nocturnes, a couple of ballades, a scherzo, a berceuse and the third of the composer’s sonatas.
One of those passages is from the scherzo of Opus 135, 50 bars of an unchanging accompaniment that many point to as an early precursor of minimalist music.
Underpinning the piece is the impatient rhythmic motif from the scherzo of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
While Bruckner did have a certain affection for the flute (its shivering excitement in the trio section of the Ninth’s scherzo is one example), most of his wind melodies are generically windy.
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Origin and Etymology of scherzo
Italian, literally, joke, from scherzare
First Known Use: 1852See Words from the same year
SCHERZO Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of scherzo for English Language Learners
: a lively, humorous piece of music that is played quickly
Learn More about scherzo
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about scherzo
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