Pianissimo (pp) – Italian Music Terms

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The Italian musical command pianissimo affects a song’s dynamics (or volume) and is an indication to play very softly; softer than piano, but louder than pianississimo.

Pronounced as pee’-an-EE-see-moh, pianissimo is abbreviated to pp. Because dynamics deal with relative changes in volume rather than exact decibel levels, pianissimo is best described as very soft compared to the overall average volume of the song and on the opposite spectrum of fortississimo, which is extremely loud even louder than fortissimo.

Also Known As


Pianissimo is known by different terms in different languages.

  • très doucement (French)
  • sehr leise (German)

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