Definition of allegretto in English:


adjective & adverb

  • (especially as a direction) at a fairly brisk tempo.

    • ‘The buoyancy of the first movement was slightly exaggerated by all three musicians: the allegretto indication does, after all, bear the qualification poco.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, it does match the reduced forces of the chamber score and settles into a nice fit in the allegretto movements.’
    • ‘Marked allegretto scherzando, in the key of A minor, this piece has a lively, playful spirit.’
    • ‘It's more allegretto than andante, like a Brahms symphonic intermezzo.’
    • ‘‘Yes,’ he had in a pause regained his allegretto humour.’


  • A movement or piece to be played fairly briskly.

    • ‘Following the intermission there was hardly pause enough to take one's seat: Gergiev lunged forward into the allegretto, his hands caressing the strings as if consoling an infant.’
    • ‘Schiff was not afraid to make a wistful gesture in the adagio with a slight bending back of his head, nor to smile during the most tender phrases of the allegretto.’
    • ‘There are more sensuous pauses and pensive gulfs between his allegrettos and adagios.’
    • ‘A slow, caressing opening statement leads to a jaunty allegretto and then to a rondo with a distinct gypsy flavor.’
    • ‘The conductor's subtly, phrased, light treatment of the first movement and the long unbroken lyrical line of the Andante quasi allegretto really made the music glow anew!’


Italian, diminutive of allegro.