rubato
(roo-BAH-toe)


[It., stolen]


A practice common in Romantic compositions of taking part of the duration from one note and giving it to another. It involves the performer tastefully stretching, slowing, or hurrying the tempo as she/he sees fit, thus imparting flexibility and emotion to the performance.


More about tempo markings


SUGGESTED LISTENING EXAMPLES:

Chopin: Fantaisie-Impromptu in C-sharp minor, Op. 66, (bridge to second theme and opening of second theme)
W. W. Norton - 4-CD Musical Example Bank -- Disc 3, Track 14
Chopin: Prelude in E minor, Op. 28, No. 4
W. W. Norton - 4-CD Musical Example Bank -- Disc 1, Track 16
Liszt: Hungarian Rhapsody, No. 2 (ending)
W. W. Norton - 4-CD Musical Example Bank -- Disc 1, Track 42
Ravel: Rapsodie espagnole, "Feria" (middle section)
W. W. Norton - 4-CD Musical Example Bank -- Disc 1, Track 65
Verdi: Rigoletto, "La donna é mobile"
W. W. Norton - 4-CD Musical Example Bank -- Disc 1, Track 56

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