a-b-a form: a musical convention long preferred by composers who can't "C."
adagio fromaggio: to play in a slow and cheesy manner.
a la regretto: tempo assigned to a performance by the conductor AFTER it is panned by the local music critics.
al capone: performing while standing on a neutered rooster.
al dente con tableau: in opera, chew the scenery.
allegro con brillo: the fastest way to wash pots and pans.
anDante: A musical composition that is Infernally slow.
Angus Dei: a divine, beefy tone.
antiphonal: referring to the prohibition of cell phones in the concert hall
a patella: unaccompanied knee-slapping.
appologgiatura: an ornament you regret after playing it.
approximatura: a series of notes played by a performer and not intended by the composer, especially when disguised with an air of "I meant to do that."
approximento: a musical entrance that is somewhat close to the correct pitch.
baffoon: baboon with bassoon.
barbie dolce: sweet but plastic.
bar line: what musicians form after a concert.
bass lure: a seductive refrain.
basso continuo: the act of game fishing after the legal season has ended.
basso profundo: an opera about deep sea fishing.
basso refundo: the sad but predictable consequence of the ill-fated "Three Basses" concert tour.
brake drum: The instrument most used to slow the tempo in an orchestra.
bull horn: a brass instrument that plays notes you wouldn't believe.
cacophany: composition incorporating many people with chest colds.
carmina banana: a medieval musical plantain.
concerto con carne: a piece for single instrument played in a "chili" manner.
concerto grosso: a really BAD performance.
contrababoon: the simian assistant of a Latin American revolutionary organ grinder.
Coral Symphony: (see: Beethoven -- Caribbean period).
cornetti trombosis: disastrous entanglement of brass instruments that can occur when musicians are not careful exiting the stage.
crashendo: the increasing sense of aggravation felt by band members as those trumpet players keep dropping their mutes on the hard stage floor.
d.c. al capone: you betta go back to the beginning, capiche?
dill piccolo: a wind instrument that plays only sour notes.
diminderwindo: fading of daylight at dusk, as seen from indoors.
diminuendo: the process of quieting a rumor in the orchestra pit.
eardrum: a teeny, tiny tympani.
etude brute: an early form of Roman music performed with a rapid, sharp, repetitive beat.
fermantra: a note that is held over and over and over and...
fermatahorn: an Alpine wind instrument used for playing long notes.
fermoota: a rest of indefinite length and dubious value.
fiddler crabs: grumpy string players.
flute flies: gnat-like bugs that bother musicians playing out-of-doors.
fog horn: a brass instrument that plays when the conductor's intentions are not clear.
fortississippi: with mighty, flowing strength.
frugalhorn: a sensible, inexpensive brass instrument.
fruitti tutti: a chorus singing together in an exaggerated, overripe manner.
Gaul blatter: a French horn player.
good conductor: A person who can give an electrifying performance.
grace note: the I.O.U. you deposit in the church collection plate when you're out of cash.
gregorian champ: monk who can hold a note the longest.
ground brass: when someone in the marching band drops a sousaphone.
ground hog: someone who takes control of the repeated bass line and won't let others play it.
Herbert von Carryon: a conductor who never rides in the cargo hold.
hyperportamento: a tone that soars, bends, strains until it pierces into another dimension and leaves, ever after, a porthole to heaven.
kvetchendo: gradually getting ANNOYINGLY louder.
maestrousseau: at the pace of a wedding march.
mallade: a romantic song that's pretty awful
matterhorn: an intrument of cosmic influence designed to create something out of nothing.
molto bolto: head straight for the ending, but don't make it seemed rushed.
mucho caffinato: play loudly enough to wake up those sleeping in the audience.
oeuferture: musical composition commissioned by the National Egg Marketing Council.
oraToro: a lawn mower may be substituted for the original instrumentation at this point.
opera buffa: musical stage production at a nudists' camp.
pastorale: beverage to drink in the country when listening to Beethoven with a member of the clergy.
phollyphonic: badly arranged harmonizations.
pianorama: instrument capable of broad, sweeping musical performances.
pipe smoker: an extremely virtuosic organist.
pizzacato: the act of removing anchovies from an Italian dish with short, quick motions and tossing them to a nearby awaiting feline friend.
Placebo Domingo: faux tenor.
pollyphonic: orchestra made up of lots of parrots
poochini: When singing, to be accompanied by your dog.
Pre-Classical Conservatism: school of thought which fostered the idea, "if it ain't baroque, don't fix it"
prelude: a cue, found in some of the earlier oratorios, instructing those singing the roles of the wicked to pray in an offensive or profane manner
presto chango: quickly going from a very fast to a very slow tempo
(The) Rights of Strings: manifesto of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Bowed Instruments.
rooti tooti: use of a potato as a trumpet mute.
rubato: cross between rhubarb and a tomato.
schmaltzando: a sudden burst of music from the Guy Lombardo band.
snacktus: Quiet, contemplative music played during the appetizer at Catholic wedding receptions
Sosaphone: a cylindrical wooden instrument used to play smash hits.
spinet: politician's order .
spritzicato: plucking of a stringed instrument to produce a bright, bubbly sound, usually accompanied by sparkling water with lemon (wine optional).
status cymbal: an instrument to be played at inaugurations and socialite balls.
Tempe Arizona: a hot passage.
tempo tantrum: what a young orchestra is having when it's not keeping time with the conductor.
timpani alley: a row of kettledrums. Term originated in New York City area.
tincanabulation: the annoying or irritating sounds made by an unmusical person using extremely cheap bells. From Poe's "The Bells" and "tin cans".
toiletto: the effect on the human voice of reverberation in small rooms with ceramic tiles.
trouble clef: any clef one can't read, e.g., the alto clef for pianists.
vesuvioso: a gradual buildup to a fiery conclusion.
woodwind: a noise in the game of golf, made by a club missing the ball on a tee shot.