Melodrama (from Gk. melos, drama; Fr. mélodrame, It. melologo; Ger. Melodram)
- Peter Branscombe
A kind of drama, or a part of a drama, in which the action is carried forward by the protagonist speaking in the pauses of, and later commonly during, a musical accompaniment. (It is distinct from the Italian melodramma, meaning simply ‘musical drama’, or opera.) The brief orchestral passages that separate the dialogues are clearly related to, and presumably in a sense derived from, those in accompanied operatic recitative (just as the pantomimic movement and gesture of a scene like Beckmesser’s discovery of the song manuscript in ...