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Bravura

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(pronounced bruh-vyoor-uh or bruh-voor-uh; “oo” pronounced as in “book” and not as in “boot”)  noun and adjective

Definition

(noun) 1. a musical passage or piece (often ornate) demanding great skill and technique in the performer. 2. exceptional technical skill and brilliance in a performance or presentation, or in the execution of something. 3. a display that is showy and brilliant or marked by immense daring.

Main Example

  • Did you watch the “60 Minutes” segment of last month (Sunday, Oct. 15) about how some rogue pharmacies, working hand in glove with some equally dishonorable drug manufacturers, were big-time contributors to the nation’s current opioid abuse crisis? The news story pointed out that the hitherto powerful DEA was unable to take any action against these shady businesses because it had been defanged by a new law, one championed in Congress by Rep. Tom Marino at the bidding of, you guessed it, lobbyists from the pharmaceutical industry. An even more disturbing fact in that segment: that Marino was the Trump administration’s new drug czar nominee! Well, guess what? Within 48 hours of the airing of that “60 Minutes” episode, Tom Marino’s nomination had collapsed and Congressional leaders announced that they would revisit the reprehensible law. Just one more example of the bravura journalism and storytelling we Americans have come to expect from “60 Minutes.”

Workplace Examples

  • As of this morning, most of the execs were not at all in favor of Nicole’s big idea--i.e., setting up factories in some of the emerging markets in Africa. But, this afternoon, by the time she had finished speaking, a preponderant majority of the company’s top brass had enthusiastically given her the go-ahead, all because of the masterful way she pieced together her two-hour-long presentation. A bravura performance, no question!
  • Often, you can appreciate someone’s technical bravura on a musical instrument even if you are not an aficionado of that particular genre of music. For instance, anyone--and I mean anyone--who watches this electrifying 32-second clip will immediately and correctly conclude that the man at the piano possesses exceptional skills. Indeed, the pianist featured in the clip, Vadym Kholodenko, won the gold medal at the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.

Other Examples

  • a colleague remarking: “I agree that some of the arguments Harvey presented during the meeting were quite persuasive, but overall his presentation lacked the level or amount of bravura we’ve come to expect of him. It’s as if something else was weighing on his mind.”
  • at last year’s summer Olympics in Rio, the performance by American gymnasts, most notably Aly Raisman and Simone Biles, being described by some as “the most incredible display of bravura the world of gymnastics has ever seen”
  • the displays of bravura by the late stunt performer Evel Knievel, one of whose famous jumps was the one across the Snake River Canyon in Idaho in 1974
  • Meryl Streep’s bravura acting in one movie after another, which explains why she has won 20 Oscar nominations so far, the most in the history of the Academy Awards
  • the legendary Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, who won the Pulitzer for their bravura reporting on Watergate in the 1970s

© 2016 V.J. Singal
No part of this may be reproduced in any form without written permission of the author.


This Month's Other Words

bravura
vitiate
impetuous
tawdry
voluble
atavistic


   
   


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