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accompaniment. The term as sometimes used today implies the presence of a prin. perf. (singer, violinist, etc.) more or less subserviently supplied with a background by another perf. or perfs. (pianist, orch., etc.). This is not the original use of the word, which carried no suggestion of subservience, ‘Sonata for Harpsichord with Violin Accompaniment’ being a common 18th-cent. term. However, to describe the orch. part of a Brahms conc. as a subservient acc. is obviously ridiculous. Equally, the pf. part of songs by such composers as Schubert, Wolf, Strauss, Fauré, and others is often of equal importance with the v. Thus, in the 20th cent., the art of pf. acc. has become highly developed, e.g. by Gerald Moore, Benjamin Britten, and many others.

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ac·com·pa·ni·ment / əˈkəmp(ə)nimənt/ • n. 1. a musical part that supports or partners a solo instrument, voice, or group: she sang to a guitar accompaniment. ∎  music played to complement or as background to an activity: lush string accompaniments to romantic scenes. 2. something that is supplementary to or complements something else, typically food.

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1. Ornament further enriching another ornament.

2. Building or ornament closely connected with, or essential to, the completeness of the design, such as the wings of a Palladian villa. See accessory.