A fermata (Italian:
Fermata is the Italian name for the sign (𝄐), which in English is commonly called a Pause, and signifies that the note over which it is placed should be held on beyond its natural duration. It is sometimes put over a bar or double bar, in which case it intimates a short interval of
Other names for a fermata are corona (Italian), point d'orgue (French), Fermate (German), and calderón (Spanish).
In the classical and baroque eras, fermatas were usually points at which performers were expected to improvise cadenzas commensurate with its place in the score: in the middle of a movement required short cadenzas, over a I6
4 and it implied the kind of cadenzas that are associated with the ending of concerto movements.
The word lunga (shortened form of the Italian lunga pausa, meaning "long pause") is sometimes added above a fermata to indicate a longer duration, the length of which is at the discretion of the performer rather than note values.
Some modern composers (including
The fermata sign is encoded in the Musical Symbols block of Unicode as U+1D110 MUSICAL SYMBOL FERMATA: 𝄐 and U+1D111 MUSICAL SYMBOL FERMATA BELOW: 𝄑