Cadenza

A virtuoso solo passage which usually appear near the end of a movement of a concerto

Cadenza music usually appears in concertos (a musical form composed of one or several soloists and accompanied by an orchestra), and usually contains virtuoso elements, which are used to demonstrate the outstanding performance skills of the soloist(s).

During the cadenza, the orchestra usually stops playing, the purpose is to keep the audience's attention on the soloist(s).

In early concerto works (such as those of Bach or Mozart), composers usually left the cadenza entirely to the soloist, or even allowed the soloist to improvise on stage to make soloist's personal characteristics are attached on the relevant piece. Starting from the of post-classical concertos (such as Beethoven's concertos), composers would sometimes write the cadenza themselves, one of the purposes is to limit the soloist's characteristics to the structure or spirit of the composition.

Example of Cadenza

Leonidas Kavakos, Paganini Cadenza

Writer: Frankie Chan