Definition of scherzo in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈskertsō/

noun (plural scherzos or scherzi /-tsē/)

A vigorous, light, or playful composition, typically comprising a movement in a symphony or sonata.
Example sentences
  • Often, at pedagogy conferences, we witness prodigiously talented fourteen-year-olds taking a master lesson in huge pieces like Prokofiev sonatas or Chopin scherzos.
  • The symphony takes the idea through a more classically-oriented structure: an opening allegro, a slow movement, a scherzo, and a dead-march finale.
  • Allusion to the trio, as in some of Beethoven's symphonic scherzos, briefly turns up in the coda.


Italian, literally 'jest'.

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.