Open main menu

Martelé (French; Italian martellato), literally "hammered," is a bowstroke, used when playing bowed string instruments, though the Italian martellando and martellato are also applied to piano and vocal technique, and even (by Franz Liszt) to the organ (Milsom 2002). The effect is usually produced by holding the bow against the string with pressure, then releasing it explosively to produce a sharp, biting attack with a rest between strokes (Cooke 2001). Some violinists use it when playing staccato notes.

See alsoEdit


  • Cooke, Peter. 2001. "Bow, II: Bowing, 3, (v): Martelé". The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell. London: Macmillan Publishers.
  • Milsom, David. 2002. "Martellando, Martellato". The Oxford Companion to Music, edited by Alison Latham. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-866212-9.

External linksEdit