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1. flexibility of tempo in performance
2. to be played with a flexible tempo



in music, a term designating a rhythmically free (not strictly in time) execution of the notes. Rubato is usually associated with the acceleration and slackening of tempo.

References in periodicals archive ?
Two artists of a very different class--Garcia [the author's father] and Pagannini--excelled in the use of the tempo rubato.
The tempo rubato, again, is useful in preparing a shake, by permitting this preparation to take place on the preceding notes; thus: [Example 4]
The tempo rubato, if used affectedly, or without discretion, destroys all balance, and so tortures the melody.
Other sources contemporary to Garcia offer similar instructions in the use of tempo rubato.
The tempo rubato is an effect much employed--it is much used but also much abused.
113 also focuses on the application of tempo rubato and on the addition of "appoggiaturas".
Wolfgang Mozart, in a letter to his father, 23 October 1777: "They cannot understand how I keep the left hand independent in the tempo rubato of an adagio, for with them the left hand always follows the right" (Hans Mermann, ed.
In Chapter 4 we see how in the eighteenth century it became associated with the violinist Franz Benda, who also applied the term 'rubato' to irregular groupings of melody notes; in the next century Paganini was noted for his use of tempo rubato 'by phrase' (i.
displacement of the whole texture via tempo flexibility) was first called 'tempo rubato' by Christian Kalkbrenner (father of Friedrich) in 1789, but the same connotation of the term is also implied by a passage in the presumed original version of Hummel's F minor Sonata (probably dating from the late 1790s), and in 1810 we find Philip Antony Corri (son of Domenico) taking this as the sole meaning of tempo rubato and adopting both a performer's and a composer's viewpoint: rubato is appropriate in certain situations but 'seldom lasts longer than a bar or two, and if done to excess is caricature' (Plate XV on p.
Time will tell, but in the mean time performers and scholars alike will find in this book a wealth of information on the history of tempo rubato and on various related topics.
Richard Hudson, Stolen Time: The History of Tempo Rubato (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994): 2.