AskDefine | Define fanfare

Dictionary Definition



1 a showy outward display [syn: ostentation]
2 (music) a short lively tune played on brass instruments; "he entered to a flourish of trumpets"; "her arrival was greeted with a rousing fanfare" [syn: flourish, tucket]

User Contributed Dictionary

see Fanfare




  1. A flourish of trumpets or horns as to announce; a short and lively air performed on hunting horns during the chase.
    They played a short fanfare to announce the arrival of the king.
  2. A show of ceremony or celebration.
    The town opened the new library with fanfare and a speech from the mayor.


a flourish of trumpets or horns
a show of ceremony or celebration
  • Spanish: fanfarria



IPA: /fɑnfarə/


  1. A brass band, with percussion.
  2. A fanfare (flourish).

Extensive Definition

A fanfare is a short piece of music played by trumpets and other brass instruments, frequently accompanied by percussion, usually for ceremonial purposes. The term is also used symbolically, for instance of occasions for which there is much publicity, even when no music is involved.
Fanfares originated in the Middle Ages; although popular depictions of ancient Rome frequently include fanfares, the evidence is slight. In 18th century France the fanfare was a movement with energy and repetition of notes, and fanfares of the modern description date from the 19th century, when they were composed for British coronations (such as Hubert Parry's I was glad for Edward VII) and other important occasions.

Fanfares today

Fanfares are popular as theme music for television and radio news programs. Additionally they are often used as victory marches in video games, particularly Role Playing Games.
With such widely known titles as Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest, the fanfares often stay nearly the same in each game iteration, changing in flavor & instrumentation to reflect the title's particular musical style and to show a growth of that particular element of the game (Both the fanfare itself and the general music). With over 12 titles under its belt, the Final Fantasy series has come to be expected to change the style of the fanfares in each game. In fact, the victory theme itself was frequently entitled "Fanfare". This was even subverted in the latest title, Final Fantasy XII, where the fanfare was eliminated for any non-Boss battle; instead only the music of the surrounding landscape provided for musical accompaniment.
Fanfares are also frequently seen in Military parades.
fanfare in German: Fanfare
fanfare in French: Fanfare
fanfare in Limburgan: Fanfaar
fanfare in Dutch: Fanfare
fanfare in Japanese: ファンファーレ
fanfare in Polish: Fanfara
fanfare in Swedish: Fanfar

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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