Ritornello

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Related to Ritornello form: ritornelli, Rondo form

Ritornello

 

(1) In vocal music of the 17th through early 18th centuries, short instrumental sections serving as introductions, intermezzi or codas. Sometimes a ritornello used as an introduction is repeated at the end of a piece as a coda. If the same ritornello is heard in the middle of a work as well as in the beginning and end, it may be referred to as a refrain. In modern Italian the terms “ritornello” and ripresa are synonyms.

(2) In dance music, the introductory and concluding sections.

(3) In ballet of the late 17th through early 18th centuries, an instrumental introduction to a dance.

(4) In poetry (especially Italian folk and medieval poetry) a special three-line stanza.

References in periodicals archive ?
Ironically, the one instance within these concertos when Torelli opens with a closed period, and is therefore able to produce an approximation of true ritornello form, occurs in a movement, the opening Presto of the ninth concerto, that Suess labels "orchestral.
Boyd adapts the standard format of the Cambridge series towards the particular demands of these works: chapters on background, genesis and reception, and on the individual works, are supplemented by studies of the instrumentation, the dedication score, and ritornello form, the most significant generative principle in the concertos.
Ritornello form is, therefore, not the mere product of external conditions: it arises out of a complex process of negotiation between musical and societal possibilities that makes it neither an accident nor an inevitability.
ritornello form versus "spontaneous germination"), phrase structure, rhythmic variety, harmonic balance, and orchestration.
Other parts of the book, namely the chapters on text and music, on ritornello forms, and on the work's large-scale organization provide generally useful analytical approaches and interesting perspectives.