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recitative1

[res-i-tey-tiv, ri-sahy-tuh-] /ˈrɛs ɪˌteɪ tɪv, rɪˈsaɪ tə-/
adjective
1.
pertaining to or of the nature of recital.
Origin
1855-1860
1855-60; recite + -ative

recitative2

[res-i-tuh-teev] /ˌrɛs ɪ təˈtiv/
adjective
1.
of the nature of or resembling recitation or declamation.
noun
2.
a style of vocal music intermediate between speaking and singing.
3.
a passage, part, or piece in this style.
Origin
1635-45; < Italian recitativo. See recite, -ive
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for recitative
  • Rock operas aren't usually acted out, and you won't find much in the way of recitative.
  • He perfected the transition from recitative to aria-the thrilling transformation of musicalized speech into song.
  • She does her growing up through expert camera work and then she entertains with a recitative song.
British Dictionary definitions for recitative

recitative1

/ˌrɛsɪtəˈtiːv/
noun
1.
a passage in a musical composition, esp the narrative parts in an oratorio, set for one voice with either continuo accompaniment only or full accompaniment, reflecting the natural rhythms of speech
Word Origin
C17: from Italian recitativo; see recite

recitative2

/rɪˈsaɪtətɪv/
adjective
1.
of or relating to recital
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for recitative
n.

"style of musical declamation intermediate between speech and singing, form of song resembling declamation," 1650s, from Italian recitativo, from recitato, past participle of recitare, from Latin recitare "read out, read aloud" (see recite). From 1640s as an adjective. The Italian form of the word was used in English from 1610s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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recitative in Culture
recitative [(res-i-tuh-teev)]

A part of a cantata, opera, or oratorio in which singers converse, describe action, or declaim. It moves the action forward between the high musical moments. Recitatives are distinguished from arias, which are more expressive and musically more elaborate. Recitatives usually have only one syllable of text for each note of music, and the accompaniment by instruments is often very simple.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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