alla breve

Alla breve in piano sheet music.
Alla breve can be represented by the time signature 2/2, or by a musical symbol similar to the cent sign. Image © Brandy Kraemer

Definition of Alla Breve:

The Italian musical phrase alla breve (lit. “to the breve” - where breve refers to a half-note) is an indication to play in cut time. Alla breve has the 2/2 time signature, in which one beat = half-note. The effect of alla breve is to change the pace slightly while retaining the song's rhythmic integrity. 

 

Also Known As:

  • cut time; half time; "playing in 2"
  • à deux temps rapide; à la blanche (Fr)
  • Allabreve; Takt in Halben Noten (Ger)

 

Pronunciation:

ah'-lah  BRAY-vay
 

More Rhythm & Tempo Commands

 

Learn the Essential Musical Symbols:
Staff & Barlines
The Grand Staff
Key Signatures
Time Signatures

Note Lengths
Dotted Notes
Music Rests
Tempo Commands

Accidentals
Articulation
Dynamics & Volume
8va & Octave Commands

Repeat Signs
Segno & Coda Signs
Pedal Marks
Piano Chords

Trills
Turns
Tremolos
Glissando
Mordents
 

Beginner Piano Lessons

 ▪  Notes of the Piano Keys
 ▪  The Point Of Double-Sharps
 ▪  Finding Middle C on the Piano
 ▪  Essential Piano Fingering
 ▪  Comparing Major & Minor Chords

Getting Started on Keyboards
 ▪  Sitting Correctly at the Keys
 ▪  Playing Piano vs. Electric Keyboard
 ▪  How to Buy a Used Piano

Piano Chords
 ▪  Chord Types & Symbols in Sheet Music
 ▪  Root Notes & Chord Inversion
 ▪  Diminished Chords & Dissonance
 ▪  Essential Piano Chord Fingering

Piano Care
 ▪  Everyday Piano Care
 ▪  Safely Whiten Your Piano Keys
 ▪  When to Tune a Piano
 ▪  Piano Room Temps & Humidity Levels

Piano Recitals & Performing
 ▪  What to Eat & Drink Before a Performance
 ▪  Concert Etiquette for the Audience
 ▪  Warming Up for a Piano Performance
 ▪  Overcoming Mistakes On Stage

Musical Quizzes
 ● Identify the Piano Keys
 ● Key Signature Quiz
 ● Note Length & Rest Quiz (U.S. or U.K. English)
 ● Grand Staff Notes Quiz
 ● Time Signature & Rhythm Quiz
 


Helpful Info For Owning a Piano


Learn How to Safely Whiten Your Piano Keys
Learn ivory-safe methods for brightening up your acoustic piano keys, and find out what you can do to prevent keyboard yellowing.

Know When to Tune a Piano
Find out when (and how frequently) you should be scheduling a professional piano tuning to keep your piano healthy, on-pitch, and lengthen its playing life.



Ideal Piano Temp & Humidity Levels
Learn how to maintain sound quality and piano health by monitoring the temperature, humidity, and natural light in your piano room.