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n. Music
A sustained, smooth-flowing melodic line.

[Italian, from Latin cantilēna, song, from cantus; see canticle.]


(Classical Music) a smooth flowing style in the writing of vocal music
[C18: Italian, from Latin cantilēna a song]


(ˌkæn tlˈi nə, -ˈeɪ nə)

n., pl. -nas.
a simple, lyric, melodic passage for voice or instrument.
[1730–40; < Italian < Latin cantilēna refrain, perhaps by dissimilation from *cantilēla, derivative of cantus song; see canto]
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References in periodicals archive ?
OREGON FESTIVAL CHOIRS - "Peace on Earth," featuring Festival Boychoirs Fiero and Allegro and Festival Girlchoirs Lyrica and Cantilena performing works by Vivaldi, Schutz and Rutter, seasonal favorites and world music, 4 p.
Cantilena romana: Untersuchungen zur Uberlieferung des gregorianischen Chorals.
The score is a mosaic of firefly elusiveness and languorous cantilena, a patchwork which relies so much upon alert interaction between the soloist and the large orchestra.
Valha o friso: nesse cenario, todas as acoes e atuacoes tendem a se reduzir a cantilena dita, da promocao e autopromocao (seja qual for o elemento valorado), a semelhanca de um fio que perpassa a cerzidura inteira e, ao mesmo tempo, silenciosamente, com matiz ostensivo, a caracteriza.
All the same, he attended to Mimi with palpable compassion: like Butterfly's Sharpless, this is one of Puccini's great "listening" roles, where a fine singer's silence can be as eloquent as his cantilena.
The Kirov has the means to flesh out the Balanchine steps (that are sometimes danced hastily) and make them sing with cantilena, a Russian eliding of musical impulses into luscious phrases.
Her bevelled spectral glide furnish, unusual: maps to gene margin prior frivolous ought soon to lift off ransom by choice, cantilena.
When forbearing the antiquated voice of the tenor Voitech Schrenkel, it comes across as a well-graded recording with a dramatic first movement, an objective scherzo and wide-breath cantilena of the third movement, followed by an (more two-part than monolithic) elegy with the superlative soprano Renate Franck-Reinecke.
And even as early as the celestial Chaconne, in 1976, the Farrell part is principally about pointe, heights, shooting-star extensions-all rays and flares--with minimal plie (and then, mostly plie on pointe), and the ache of adagio, its palpable cantilena line, receding from her realm.
Moving back to a less literal level, Odo argues that 'optima cantilena est cum quis coram sacerdote peccata sua cantat, coram Deo laudes et orationes cum deuotione resonat' (fol.
How deftly Hindemith stresses the chromatic brass writing against the string cantilena at the end of the first movement.
Ultimately, then, it takes us far too long to arrive at some of the most brilliant lines in the collection, those that end the volume: "Quiet rolls / The Time / Rubbing off/ The pencil notes / Leaving rust / Where the painter tired / Left no varnish / To touch the forgotten // Into the darkness / Have vanished / All the meek / Who modulated / The cantilena / But tell me my dear / How long / Has the light been off?