so·​na·​ta | \ sə-ˈnä-tə How to pronounce sonata (audio) \

Definition of sonata

: an instrumental musical composition typically of three or four movements in contrasting forms and keys

Examples of sonata in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Simply put your finger down and twirl the circle to pick any one of the moods that arise: Passionate (a Schumann sonata for violin and piano)! Corey Seymour, Vogue, "Idagio—The Spotify For Classical Music—Has Changed My Life," 15 May 2019 Another duo, cellist Steven Isserlis and fortepianist Robert Levin, will play the complete Beethoven cello sonatas in two concerts. John Von Rhein,, "U. of C. Presents announces 2018-19 classical series," 27 Feb. 2018 Some of these sonatas end in elegant simplicity rather than any grand statement, and Lewis, to his credit, never tries to make more of the music than what’s there. David Weininger,, "From Philip Glass to folk-inspired violin, sounds for the summer," 4 July 2018 Overshadowed by bigger, later accomplishments, this sonata has become standard repertory for clarinetists. Christian Hertzog,, "Copland and Bernstein arrangements impressive at Athenaeum," 12 Mar. 2018 In addition, there will be performances of all his string quartets and piano sonatas, plus various chamber and choral works. Charles Passy, WSJ, "Carnegie Hall’s New Season Celebrates Beethoven’s Birth," 30 Jan. 2019 Pizza delivery guy asks to play family's piano, wows with Beethoven sonata. Fox News, "FOX NEWS FIRST: Mystery deepens in search for Iowa college student; Facebook fuels new election meddling fears," 1 Aug. 2018 That was followed by another sweaty hour in which Hinterhäuser assayed all six of Ustvolskaya’s piano sonatas, written between 1947 and 1988, with no break between them. Mark Swed,, "This year's Ojai Music Festival was bright, and dark, and very very hot," 12 June 2018 Their recital replacements will be violinist Gil Shaham and pianist Akira Eguchi, who will perform sonatas by Franck, Scott Wheeler and Avner Dorman. John Von Rhein,, "Lyric's 2018-19 season: Italian favorites and 'West Side Story'," 6 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sonata.' 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 sonata

1786, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sonata

Italian, from sonare to sound, from Latin

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Statistics for sonata

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for sonata

The first known use of sonata was in 1786

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English Language Learners Definition of sonata

music : a piece of music written for one or two instruments that has usually three or four large sections that are different from each other in rhythm and mood


so·​na·​ta | \ sə-ˈnä-tə How to pronounce sonata (audio) \

Kids Definition of sonata

: a musical composition for one or two instruments consisting of three or four separate sections in different forms and keys


So·​na·​ta | \ sō-ˈnä-tə How to pronounce Sonata (audio) \

Medical Definition of Sonata

used for a preparation of zaleplon

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sonata

Spanish Central: Translation of sonata

Nglish: Translation of sonata for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about sonata

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