Definition of scherzo in English:

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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'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: scher·zo

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