Glossary

Aria: a song or a melody that expresses personal emotions or thoughts. It is the most elaborate form of opera for a single voice.

Duet: a piece of music sung by two performers.

Trio: a piece of music sung by three performers.

Quartet: song with four voices or a group composed of four musicians.

Chorus: a group of singers who sing together.

Ensemble: different melodies and often different texts sung by two or more voices at the same time.

Intonation: accuracy of a note when singing or playing an instrument.

Libretto: the text of an opera.

Librettist: the writer who adapts the story text so that it fits with the music.

Legato: instruction for musicians meaning tied or joined. It is the opposite of staccato, which indicates a musical phrase or a line where the notes are detached.

Partition: notebook where the notes are written that the musicians must play, or singers must sing.

Operetta: a light opera, developed in the 19th century particularly by Offenbach in France and Johann Strauss (son) in Vienna.

Opera bouffe: comic opera in French

Opera buffa: Italian comic opera (beginning of 18th century)

Opéra comique: originally purely comic and later became more sentimental includes dialogues combined with songs.

Recitative: sung discourse that sounds almost like speech in certain operas and oratorios.