Tempo in Music


Understanding tempo in music is fast or slow song when sung in a music composition. A composer, usually determines the desired tempo song that was written on the left over the composition of his songs. The term due is usually in the form of words in Italian language or languages ​​other currencies. The term can also be placed tempo in the middle of the song, ie when the composer really want change tempo in the middle of his song was to write the word "change tempo" in the notation or staves that changed tempo.

Measuring Tempo

Tempo will typically be written at the beginning of a piece of music, and in modern Western music is usually indicated in beats per minute (bpm). This means that the number of beats (pulse) per minute played. The greater the tempo, the larger the number of beats that must be played in one minute. Such mathematical sign of maturity is becoming increasingly popular in the first half of the 19th century, after the metronome had been invented by Johann Nepomuk Mälzel, although early metronomes somewhat inconsistent. Beethoven was the first composer to use the metronome, and in 1817 he gave a metronomic indications for "eight Symphonies" her.
metronome tempo music
At the metronome are also bell sets that we can match beats sound bars, 2/4, 3/4, 4/4, 6/8, and so on. Bell will sound on every first beat in every segment bars. Thus the buzzer coincided with the first beat of the track bars. The technical writing position metronome mark is placed near term due form letter acronym, a word of Metronome MM Malzel. The name is taken from the name of the copyright owner is the inventor, Johann Nepomuk Malzel (1770-1838).

Example metronome mark: MM. = 130 This means that there are 130 beats in the minute. So the greater the number, the faster the tempo MM song. With the advent of modern electronics, bpm be a very appropriate size. Music sequencer using the system to indicate the tempo bpm.

Signs Tempo Basic

All signs are based on a few root words.
- By adding Issimo words mean very.
- By adding the-ino words mean more.
- By adding a Etto means little.

Metronome marks are a guide only and depending on the sign, these figures may not be appropriate in any condition to play music.

Larghissimo - very, very slow (20 bpm and below)
Grave - slow and solemn (20-40 bpm)
Lento - slow (40-60 bpm)
Largo - width (40-60 bpm)
Larghetto - rather wide (60-66 bpm)
Adagio - slow and stately (casual) (66-76 bpm)
Adagietto - rather slow (70-80 bpm)
Andante - Moderato bit slower than Andante
Andante - walking pace (76-108 bpm)
Andantino - slightly faster than Andante
Moderato - moderate (108-120 bpm)
Allegretto - pretty fast (but less so than allegro)
Allegro Moderato - quite fast (112-124 bpm)
Allegro fast - quick and decisive (120-140 bpm)
Vivace - agile and fast (≈ 140 bpm) (quicker than allegro)
Vivacissimo - very fast and lively
Allegrissimo - very fast
Presto - very fast (168-200 bpm)
Prestissimo - very fast (more than 200 bpm)


  • A Piacere - players can use discretion relating to tempo and rhythm; literally "at will"
  • L'istesso tempo - at the same speed
  • Tempo comodo - on speed (normal) comfortable
  • Tempo di ... - the speed of ... (Such as Tempo di Valse (waltz pace), Tempo di marcia (speed mars)
  • Tempo Giusto - at a consistent speed, the speed of the 'right', in strict tempo
  • Tempo semplice - simple, regular pace, clearly

General qualifications:

  • alla - manner or style of, as in
  • alla breve - tempo 2/2. In Dutch: gehalverde congregation
  • alla marcia - in a march (eg, Beethoven, op 101.)
  • all ongarese - 'in Hungarian style
  • alla (danza) tedesca - the German dance and dance styles are similar in tempo rather quickly (see Beethoven, op 79, op 130 ..)
  • Alla turca - in the Turkish style, which, in imitation of Turkish military music (music Janizary), which became popular in Europe in the late 18th century (eg, Mozart, K. 331, K. 384)
  • alla zingarese - in the style of Gypsy music
  • assai - very much, as in allegro assai, quite fast
  • ben - well, as in ben MARCATO (well marked or accented)
  • con bravura - with skills
  • con brio - with zeal and enthusiasm
  • con fuoco - with fire
  • con moto - with movement
  • deciso - clear, unequivocal
  • fugato - in fugal style, usually part of the non-fugal composition; such passages often occur in the development of symphonies, sonatas, and quartets
  • in modo - in manner, in style: in modo Napolitano (in the Neapolitan style), in modo in marcia funebre (in a funeral march)
  • meno - less, such as Mosso meno (less fast)
  • appena - almost nothing, like appena forte (loud hardly at all)
  • misterioso - mysterious
  • molto - much, very, as molto allegro (very quick) or molto adagio (very slow)
  • non troppo - is not too much, such as allegro non troppo (or allegro ma non troppo) means "fast, but not too much"
  • non tanto - is not so much
  • piu - more, such as di piu allegro (faster), used as a relative indication of when it changes tempo
  • piuttosto - more, like piuttosto allegro (rather quickly)
  • poco - a little, a little, like poco adagio
  • poco a poco - piecemeal
  • Polacca - name Polish dance, polonaise usually, as in tempo in Polacca, (the "Polacca" in Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 1 shows little resemblance to the polonaise)
  • primo - principal or earlier, such as primo tempo, tempo the same as at the beginning (back to the tempo early, because of a change in tempo)
  • quasi - almost, almost, as if (like piu allegro quasi presto, "faster, as if presto")
  • senza - without, like interruzione senza (without interruption or delay), or misura senza senza tempo (without measuring tight)
  • sostenuto - sustainable, long
  • Subito - abrupt

In addition to Allegretto, composers freely apply small and superlative Italian suffix to various tempo indications: andantino, larghetto, adagietto, and larghissimo.

Connotation Tempo Based Mood

Some signs are especially marked mood (or character) also has the connotation due:
  • Affettuoso - with feelings / emotions
  • Agitato - agitated, with implied velocity
  • Appassionato - to play the passionate
  • Animato - spirit, life
  • Brillante - sparkling, glittering, as in Allegro Brillante, Rondo Brillante, or Variations Brillantes; became fashionable - in titles for virtuoso section
  • Bravura - wide
  • Cantabile - in singing style (lyrical and flowing)
  • Dolce - Sweet
  • Energico - energetic, strong, powerful
  • Eroico - heroic
  • Espressivo - expressive
  • Furioso - to play the angry or upset
  • Giocoso - carefree, funny
  • Gioioso - joy
  • Grandioso - majestic, graceful
  • Grazioso - gracefully
  • Lacrimoso - crying, sad
  • Lamentoso - wailing, sad
  • Leggero - to play lightly, or with light touch
  • Maestoso - majestic or stately (which generally indicates a serious, slow march-like movement)
  • Malinconico - melancholy
  • Marcato - marching tempo, marked with emphasis
  • Marziale - in march style, usually in simple, strongly marked rhythm and regular phrases
  • Mesto - sad, melancholy
  • Morendo - dying
  • Nobilmente - respectable (in a noble way)
  • Patetico - with great emotion
  • Pesante - very
  • Sautillé / Saltando - restlessness, rapid, and short
  • Playful - scherzando
  • Sustainable - sostenuto, sometimes with reduced tempo
  • Spiccato - sautillé slow, with a bouncy manner
  • Tenerezza - softness
  • Tranquillamente - adverb from Tranquillo, "calm"
  • Trionfante - triumphantly
  • Vivace - lively and fast, over 140 bpm (which generally indicates a fast movement)

Change in Tempo

  • Accelerando - tempo up (abbreviation: accel.)
  • Allargando - tempo down, usually near the end of the song
  • Calando - will slow (and usually also softer)
  • Doppio Movimento - double speed
  • Meno Mosso - less movement or more slowly
  • Mosso - movement, more life, or faster, such as piu Mosso, but not extreme
  • Piu Mosso - movement more or faster
  • Precipitando - rushing, run faster / forward
  • Rallentando - gradual slowing down (abbreviation: rall.)
  • Ritardando - less gradual slowing down (more sudden drop in tempo than Rallentando) (abbreviation: rit or more specifically, ritard ..)
  • Ritenuto - slightly slower, while holding. (Ritenuto stands can also be written: rit.) More specific so stands riten Also sometimes ritenuto not reflect changes in tempo, but not change the character)
  • Rubato t- empo-free adjustments for expressive purposes
  • Stretto - in a faster tempo, often close to the conclusion of a section. (The term is not necessarily related to the tempo.)
  • Stringendo - pressing faster (literally "tightening")


  1. Within the base (such as allegro) appears in large writing on the staves, these adjustments typically appear below the stave or (in the case of keyboard instruments) in the middle of a large staves.)
  2. Changes in the general tempo appoint a gradual change in tempo, because the tempo shifts immediately, composers usually only provide the name for the new tempo. (However, when Piu Mosso that Meno Mosso or appearing in large letters above the stave, it serves as a new tempo, and thus implies a change soon.) Some terms, for example, assai, molto, poco, subito, control how large and how changes should be gradual (see general qualifications).
  3. After a change of tempo, tempo composer may return to previously in two different ways:
  4. A return to the tempo tempo early after adjustment (eg "ritardando ... a tempo" (cancel effect ritardando).
  5. Primo Tempo tempo or I - indicates an immediate return to the previous tempo after the part in a different tempo (eg "Allegro Moderato Lento .......... ... Tempo I", indicating a return to Allegro). This indication often functions as a structural marker in pieces in binary form.
  6. This requirement also indicates, instantly not gradually, change tempo. Although the Italian language, composers typically use the term above, even though they have written their initial tempo marking in some other language.

Tempo marks in other languages

Although the Italian language has been commonly used in terms of tempo mark in the history of classical music, many composers wrote tempo indications in their own language. Definition tempo marks mentioned in this section can be found in the Harvard Dictionary of Music and / or the online foreign language dictionaries.

Signs Tempo French

Several composers have written tempo marks in French, among them baroque composers François Couperin and Jean-Philippe Rameau as well as Claude Debussy, Olivier Messiaen, Maurice Ravel and Alexander Scriabin.
  • Au Mouvement  - played a tempo (first or primary).
  • Grave - slowly and earnestly
  • Lent - slowly
  • Modéré - in medium tempo
  • Moins - less, as Moins vite (not fast enough)
  • Rapide - fast
  • Très - so, as in the Très vif (very much alive)
  • Vif - life
  • Vite - fast

Erik Satie is known to write extense tempo (and character) mark by defining them in a poetical and literal, as in his Gnossiennes.

Signs Tempo German

  • Langsam - slowly
  • Lebhaft - life (mood)
  • Mäßig - enough
  • Rasch - fast
  • Schnell - fast
  • Bewegt - animated, with motion

One of the first German composers to use tempo marks in his mother tongue is Ludwig van Beethoven. One is using a combination of the most complicated tempo and mood signs may Gustav Mahler. For example, the second movement of his Symphony No. 9 marked Im Tempo eines Ländlers gemächlichen, etwas täppisch und sehr derb, showing folk-dance movement as slowish, with some awkwardness and vulgarity many executions. Mahler would also sometimes combine German tempo marks the traditional Italian mark, as in the first movement of the sixth symphony, marked Allegro energico, ma non Troppo. Heftig, aber markig (energetically fast, but not too much violence. Yet powerful).

Tempo in Music 4.5 5 samuelkurnianta Understanding tempo in music is fast or slow song when sung in a music composition. A composer, usually determines the desired tempo song ...

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