Music Dictionary N

Nach - Ninna

Nobilmente - Nunc Dimittis

Nach - (German) "more"; a direction to play with increased motion

Nach und nach - (German) "more and more"; a direction to play with more increased motion, passion, or energetic animation

Nachtmusik - (German) "night music"; music composed for performance at night; a nighttime serenade for four or five solo instruments; see also notturno

Narrante - (Italian) "narratingly"; vocal instruction to sing in a narrating style

Nationalism - a musical movement of 19th century Europe which includes elements from local folk music and songs

Natural - notation used as an accidental to change the pitch of a note within the composition; without augmentation or diminishing; a note or scale that is neither flat nor sharp;

Naturale - (Italian) "ordinary, natural"; direction to return to playing the written part; instruction to discontinue a previous command or effect

N.C. - no chord; notation written in the chord row to show that no chord is used

Neo-Classical - a musical style of some modern composers greatly influenced by the more dignified elements of 18th to 19th century classical music

Neumatic - a style of plainsong which assigns two or four notes to a syllable;

Neumes - (Greek) "sign"; a pre-Renaissance musical notation of vague symbols written for early plainsong; neumatic notation; a form of musical notation created in Greece prior to the invention of the five-lined staff

New German School - a 19th century group of musicians surrounding composer Franz Liszt who followed the trends of progressive composing, opposed by more conservative composers

New Orleans Jazz - a musical style developed in late 19th century New Orleans based upon former traditional styles, elements, and African-American polyrhythms; genre created to distinguish Jazz from the popular Ragtime style; a musical style consisting of brass, percussion, and woodwind instruments known for syncopated progressions and improvisation; see also Dixieland Jazz

Ninna - (Italian) "lullaby"; a lullaby or religious pastorale

Nobilmente - (Italian) "nobly"; play majestically or in a noble manner

Nocturne - (French) "nocturnal"; a French term coined in the middle ages for things inspired by, or evocative of, the night; an 18th century musical piece for ensemble, usually performed in the evening or at dinner parties

Noël - (French) "Christmas"; a french term dating back to ancient times originally used to denote non-religious hymns and carols sung during the Christmas season, now used in religious context as well

Noh - (Sino-Japanese) "skill, talent"; a form of classical Japanese dance-drama first appearing in the 14th century

Nonet - (Italian) "ninth"; an early 19th century composition for nine performers

Non-harmonic - a note which is not harmonic with the other notes of its chord; a note which is out of key with its chord; see also appoggiatura

Nota Cambriata - (Italian) "changed note"; a note which is skipped and then followed b an augmented or diminished version, usually an interval of a third

Notation - written music; the written language of musical composing; an assembled series of written symbols and terms used to create a musical score; a written method of communicating music to the performer or musician

Note -  a written symbol which denotes the pitch and duration of a tone; Specifics: A note is not a tone. A 'note' is seen. A 'tone' is heard.

Note Value - the current length of time that it takes to play or sound a note; the proper duration of a tone in a musical performance

Notturno - (Italian) "for night, nocturnal"; an 18th century serenade for performance in the evening or at night

Number Opera - a type of opera comprised of a series of separate scenes or numbers (songs)

Nunc Dimittis - (Latin) "now dismiss"; a canticle, taken from the 2nd chapter of the biblical book of Luke, used since the 4th century in evening worship services