Share this entry
portamento Syllabification: por·ta·men·to
Pronunciation: /ˌpôrdəˈmen(t)ō/

Definition of portamento in English:

noun (plural portamentos or portamenti-tē)

1A slide from one note to another, especially in singing or playing a bowed string instrument.
Example sentences
  • His intonation, mode of approaching each note and portamenti in ‘Di Cupido impiego i vanni’, his words upon arrival, with Haim's spot-on accompaniment, said it all.
  • Horenstein brings out every bizarre detail and even puts some in - string portamenti where none are written, deliberate smears in the brass, even slightly sour wind playing - all of which contributes to one's psychic queasiness.
  • With generous string portamenti and relaxed rhythmic pointing, Karajan also washes the Czech character out of the Eighth Symphony.
2Piano playing in a manner intermediate between legato and staccato: [as modifier]: a portamento style


Italian, literally 'carrying'.

Words that rhyme with portamento

cento, cinquecento, divertimento, lento, memento, pimiento, Risorgimento, Sacramento, Sorrento, Trento
Definition of portamento in:
Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources