After eleven years living, dancing, teaching tango, and writing in Buenos Aires, I came home to L.A. in 2014, where I'm reconstructing my life.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Musical Notations for 2009

Here are some new musical terms to help you play your way through 2009!

Adagio formaggio -- to play in a slow and cheesy manner
Al dente con tableau -- in opera, chew the scenery
AnDante -- a musical composition that is infernally slow
Angus Dei -- a divine, beefy tone
Antiphonal -- referring to the prohibition of cell phones in the concert hall
A patella-- unaccompanied knee-slapping
Appologgiatura -- an ornament you regret after playing it
Approximatura -- a series of notes played by a performer and not intended by the composer, especially when disguised with an air of "I meant to do that."
Approximento -- a musical entrance that is somewhat close to the correct pitch
Bar line -- what musicians form after a concert
Basso continuo -- the act of game fishing after the legal season has ended
Basso profundo -- an opera about deep sea fishing
Brake drum -- the instrument most used to slow the tempo in an orchestra
Concerto grosso -- a really bad performance
DC al capone -- you betta go back to the beginning, capiche?
Dill piccolo -- a wind instrument that plays only sour notes
Diminuendo -- the process of quieting a rumor in the orchestra pit
Eardrum -- a teeny, tina tympani
Fermantra -- a note that is held over and over and over and...
Fiddler crabs -- grumpy string players
Flute files -- gnat-like bugs that bother musicians playing out of doors
Fog horn -- a brass instrument that plays when the conductor's intentions are not clear
Frugalhorn -- a sensible, inexpensive brass instrument
Gaul blatter -- a French horn player
Good conductor -- a person who can give an electrifying performance
Gregorian champ -- monk who can hold a note the longest
Kvetchendo -- gradually getting annoyingly louder
Mallade -- a romantic song that's pretty awful
Molto bolto
-- head straight for the ending, but don't make it seemed rushed
Opera buffa -- musical stage production at a nudist camp
Pipe smoker -- an extremely virtuosic organist
Poochini -- when singing, to beaccompanied by your dog
Pre-Classical Conservatism -- school of thought which fostered the idea, "if it ain't baroque, don't fix it."
Pre-lude -- a cue, found in some of the earlier oratorios, instructing those singing the roles of the wicked to sing in an offensive or profane manner
(The) Rights of Strings -- manifesto of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Bowed Instruments
Spinet -- politician's order
Spritzicato -- plucking of a stringed instrumentto produce a bright, bubbly sound, usually accompanied by sparkling water with lemon (wine optional)
Status cymbal -- an instrument to be played at inaugurations and socialite balls
Tempo tantrum -- what a young orchestra is having when it's not keeping time with the conductoer
Timpani alley -- a row of kettledrums
Tincanabutation -- the annoying or irritating sounds made by an unmusical person using extremely cheap bells
Vesuvioso -- a gradual buildup to a fiery conclusion


Anonymous said...

"Kvetchendo -- gradually getting annoyingly louder"

Oh my GOD!!!! I'm still chuckling. These are really fantastic.

tangocherie said...

I'm kinda partial to "Gaul Blatter" -- French horn player, myself!

Anonymous said...

I copied the list, printed it, and handed it out at rehearsals yesterday. They were a hit! Thanks for the ammo.

tangocherie said...

Johanna, there are lots more on the title link! I just picked my favorites. I'm so glad you enjoyed them.