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The verb suonare (to play music, to sound) has various related meanings, all connected with sound (il suono). 

In Escursione: Un picnic in campagna - Part 3, a guy is talking to his girlfriend about the vendemmia (grape harvest). He concludes by saying:

 

Suono l'organetto e facciamo una cena tutti quanti insieme.

I play the accordion and we have a dinner all together.

Caption 32, Escursione - Un picnic in campagna - Part 3

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BANNER PLACEHOLDER

After taking out his accordion, he says:

 

Questo è il pezzo che suono sempre.

This is the piece I always play.

Caption 34, Escursione - Un picnic in campagna - Part 3

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Back in the city, Milena and Mattia are sitting at an outdoor café. Mattia is talking about his band.

 

No, io suono solo il piano. Il ragazzo che suona la chitarra fa anche il cantante.

No, I just play the piano. The guy who plays the guitar is also the singer.

Captions 54-55, Milena e Mattia - Al ristorante - Part 1

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In the above examples, suonare means “to play” (an instrument or music), but suonare also means “to sound.” Consider the following sentence:

Francesco suona bene il violino, ma in questa stanza il violino non suona bene.

Francesco plays the violin well, but in this room the violin doesn’t sound good.

Here's a list of even more ways the verb suonare can be used:

  •      suonare bene (to sound good, or to play well—depending on the context)
  •      suonare il campanello (to ring the doorbell)
  •      suonare il claxon (to honk the horn)
  •      fare suonare (literally, to make something sound; to play something, such as a CD—as in pressing “play”)
  •      suonare in giro (perform here and there, play some gigs)
  •      essere suonato/suonata come una campana (literally, having been rung like a bell—to be off one’s head)
  •      suonare (to ring, as in a telephone or an alarm clock; to toll, as in a churchbell slowly ringing  to announce a death)
  •      suonare male a qualcuno (to not sound right to someone)
  •  

Another translation of “to play” is giocare, but this comes from the word for “game,” il gioco. In Bibione: Torneo del frisbee - Part 1 of 2,  Dario talks about his favorite gioco:

 

Mi piace molto giocare a frisbee.

I really like playing frisbee.

Caption 3, Bibione - Torneo del frisbee - Part 1

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L'Ultimate frisbee è uno sport che si gioca sia su erba che su spiaggia.

Ultimate frisbee is a sport that is played both on the grass and on the beach.

Lo scopo del gioco è fare meta.

The aim of the game is to score.

Captions 36-38, Bibione - Torneo del frisbee - Part 1

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BANNER PLACEHOLDER

So whether you like playing frisbee, playing the guitar, or playing your favorite CD, play some videos on your computer and play the Yabla Game. Can you figure out the right Italian word for all the highlighted words in the previous sentence, and in the following one? See if it sounds right to you!

(See below for the solution.)

  • giocare
  • suonare
  • fare suonare
  • fare suonare (or, fare andare—literally, to make something go)
  • giocare
  • gioco
  • suonare
Vocabulary

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Untertitel 38, 37, 36, 3
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