Definition of opera buffa in English:

opera buffa

Pronunciation /ˌäpərə ˈbo͞ofä/ /ˌɑpərə ˈbufɑ/


  • 1A comic opera (usually in Italian), especially one with characters drawn from everyday life.

    ‘an opera buffa based on a play by Goldoni’
    • ‘The main products of his Italian stay were a choral Te Deum, an opera buffa, Don Procopio, in the manner of Donizetti, and an ode-symphonie based on the life of Vasco da Gama.’
    • ‘Part tragedy and part opera buffa, the ‘invasion of Savoy’ began and ended quickly in the early part of February 1834.’
    • ‘Stendhal described it as Rossini's greatest opera buffa, but it's possible his opinion was tinged with a little sarcasm (he was a Cimarosa fan).’
    1. 1.1Opera buffa as a genre.
      ‘The author infers what made opera buffa pleasurable primarily from textual analysis of its typical structural plot components (such as familiarity, conventionality, predictability and plot archetypes).’
      • ‘Perhaps Italian opera buffa's last gasp, this inspired piece of lunacy depicts the adventures of a bridegroom on his wedding day as he frantically searches for a replacement Florentine hat similar to one accidentally eaten by his horse.’
      • ‘The reader unfamiliar with the scholarship on the opera buffa will be unable to evaluate the contribution of Mary Hunt's book.’
      • ‘His early success was based on opera buffa, but he later devoted himself to serious drama, beginning with Otello.’
      • ‘The whole work is styled as an opéra-ballet, and the overture progresses from a refined chamber start through arc-shaped spans of legato lines to moments of drama, with pointed counter asides in the style of opera buffa.’
      • ‘I certainly hope to revisit Les Danaides in the hope of finding it better than I did then; but the genre Salieri cultivated most, and in which his works are most worth reviving, remains opera buffa.’
      • ‘When Rossini, composer of The Barber of Seville, visited Beethoven in 1822, he was told to stick to opera buffa, which suited the language and temperament of Italians.’


Italian, from opera ‘opera’ + buffa ‘jest’.