A mascherata (Italian f., literally 'masquerade') is a dance from the sixteenth century and was particularly popular in Florence.[1] It was performed by costumed dancers, and frequently pantomimed Roman and Greek themes in them. At the time, it was often associated with Villanella, and performed at carnivals with the musicians and singers atop floats.[2][3][4]



Frequently the performance was satarical, and many times there were racist undertones in the archetypes or costumes. Generally there wasn't much dramatic content, and most were meant to be humorous.[5]


'Mascherata' is the past, plural, and feminine version of 'mascherare' which means to mask or hide.[6]


Orlande de Lassus was considered the master of mascheratas, and he wrote many of his pieces (mostly madrigals) while in Rome, which saw the birth of madrigals, and more specifically mascheratas.[7]

See also

The wikitionary definition of Mascherata


  1. ^ Denis Arnold, "Mascherata", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (Accessed June 18, 2008), (subscription access)
  2. ^ Denis Arnold, "Mascherata", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (Accessed June 18, 2008), (subscription access)
  3. ^ "Music dictionary: M-Ma." Dolmet. 17 Jun 2008 <>
  4. ^ "Music Encyclopedia: Mascherata." 17 Jun 2008 <>
  5. ^ Denis Arnold, "Mascherata", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (Accessed June 18, 2008), (subscription access)
  6. ^ "Mascherata." Wikitionary. 17 Jun 2008 <>
  7. ^ Denis Arnold, "Mascherata", Grove Music Online, ed. L. Macy (Accessed June 18, 2008), (subscription access)

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  • mascherata — ma·sche·rà·ta s.f. 1. CO gruppo di persone mascherate; sfilata, corteo di maschere: la festa del patrono si è conclusa con una mascherata | BU festa cui partecipano persone in maschera 2. CO estens., messinscena ridicola e di cattivo gusto,… …   Dizionario italiano

  • mascherata — {{hw}}{{mascherata}}{{/hw}}s. f. 1 Compagnia di persone in maschera. 2 (fig.) Messa in scena vistosa e di dubbio gusto | Buffoneria …   Enciclopedia di italiano

  • mascherata — pl.f. mascherate …   Dizionario dei sinonimi e contrari

  • mascherata — s. f. 1. compagnia di maschere □ travestimento 2. (fig.) messa in scena, buffoneria, carnevalata 3. (fig.) finzione, inganno CONTR. franchezza, schiettezza, sincerità …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • La mascherata — La mascarada La mascherata Forma Gran ópera Actos y escenas 2 actos Idioma original del libreto Italiano Libretista Alberto del Pizzo Fuentes literarias basada en la novela homónima de …   Wikipedia Español

  • mascarade — [ maskarad ] n. f. • 1554; it. mascarata, var. de mascherata → masque 1 ♦ Divertissement où les participants sont déguisés et masqués. ⇒ déguisement, 2. travesti . « Les mascarades [de la mi carême] attiraient les paysans à la ville » (Balzac). ♢ …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • МАСКАРАД — (фр., от ит. mascherare надевать маску). Род бала, на котором все присутствующие в масках. Словарь иностранных слов, вошедших в состав русского языка. Чудинов А.Н., 1910. МАСКАРАД ряженье, веселое собрание ряженых, замаскированных. Полный словарь …   Словарь иностранных слов русского языка

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