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sitzprobe n. a first, rough rehearsal of an opera or musical stageplay with singers and musicians, but without acting, scenery, or costumes. Etymological Note: German for ‘seated test’ or ‘sitting trial.’ (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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  • Your definition “… rehearsal … with singers and musicians,” implies that the singers aren’t musicians.  You don’t really believe that, do you??

  • No, of course not, but it needs to be specified so that it is understood that both people who play instruments and people who play their own vocal cords are present. If singers were not specified, some people might assume only the former were present.

  • That might work, but “instrumentalist” is obfuscating. I’ll think about working “pit orchestra” in, but does anyone really think that singers aren’t musicians? Or that they’re being slighted here?

  • As your last citation indicates, “sitzprobe” is now used by more than the opera world.  You might want to expand your definition beyond rough rehearsal of “an opera”.

  • How exactly is “instrumentalists” obfuscating?  (Especially in the context of “singers and…”?)

    One hears “singers and musicians” quite a bit—even in literature and publicity within the performing-arts industries—but its prevalance doesn’t make it any less suspect.  I might go to the pet store to see the “cats and dogs,” or to see the “animals,” but what grammatical sense does it make to visit “cats and animals”?

  • I have also find “singers and musicians” a bit ‘insulting’… I’m an opera singer who just sat through a sitzprobe session. I prefer to use “singers and orchestral members”.

  • I am a opera singer, and I don’t argee with the word “rough”. As my understanding, sitzprobe is seated rehearsal, where the singers the first time sing with the orchestra, focusing attention on integrating the two parties. It should not be a “rough” one.

  • Definitely NOT a rough rehearsal.

    The orchestra normally will have had at least one separate rehearsal beforehand, and the singers will have had extensive rehearsal and their parts memorized (although they may refer to their vocal score for the sitzprobe).

    I also agree that it’s not “singers and musicians”; it’s singers (or cast) and orchestra.

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