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[met-soh-suh-pran-oh, -prah-noh, med-zoh-, mez-oh-] /ˈmɛt soʊ səˈpræn oʊ, -ˈprɑ noʊ, ˈmɛd zoʊ-, ˈmɛz oʊ-/ Music.
noun, plural mezzo-sopranos, mezzo-soprani
[met-soh-suh-pran-ee, -prah-nee, med-zoh-, mez-oh-] /ˈmɛt soʊ səˈpræn i, -ˈprɑ ni, ˈmɛd zoʊ-, ˈmɛz oʊ-/ (Show IPA)
a voice or voice part intermediate in compass between soprano and contralto.
a person having such a voice.
of, pertaining to, characteristic of, or suitable to a mezzo-soprano.
Origin of mezzo-soprano
Borrowed into English from Italian around 1745-55 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for mezzo-soprano
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She sings very sweetly too; her voice is a sort of mezzo-soprano.

  • This rle may be sung by a contralto, but is better adapted to a mezzo-soprano.

    Stars of the Opera Mabel Wagnalls
  • Tell me, have you composed anything for a woman's voice, for a mezzo-soprano?

    A House of Gentlefolk Ivan Turgenev
  • The voice singing was clear and soft, yet strong—a mezzo-soprano without any culture save that of practice and native taste.

    Romany of the Snows Gilbert Parker
  • This first song of the queen, who must have a mezzo-soprano voice of dramatic quality, combines dignity and pathos.

    Stars of the Opera Mabel Wagnalls
  • Bass would have been more sublime, mezzo-soprano more piquant.

  • The part of Rosina, which in the present day is usually given to the soprano, was composed for the mezzo-soprano voice.

  • To get the best flute sounds, a full, smooth, mezzo-soprano gives the best effect.

    The Speech of Monkeys R. L. Garner
  • Little Mogalesco, with his mezzo-soprano, went to the inn, and Nissy was astounded.

    The Spirit of the Ghetto Hutchins Hapgood
British Dictionary definitions for mezzo-soprano


noun (pl) -nos
a female voice intermediate between a soprano and contralto and having a range from the A below middle C to the F an eleventh above it Sometimes shortened to mezzo
a singer with such a voice
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 mezzo-soprano

1753; see mezzo + soprano.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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