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The staccato or "pique" - that is, the phrasing in loose notes - designates a type of phrasing in which the notes of patterns and musical phrases must be executed with suspensions between they. It is an instrumental technique opposing the legato. Often the non-legato, or even detached, intermediate phrasing is called; the staccato is then considered more detached.

These loose notes are indicated by a point above or below the head of the note - usually opposite to the stem of the note figure.

Sometimes the suspension between notes is longer; the notes are then called stitched notes. Other times, the suspension is shorter; the notes are then called worn notes - sometimes called heavy notes.

Note that other signs are sometimes used to indicate specific forms of staccato. Some of them can at the same time refer to shades and thus equivalent to simple accents. On the other hand, the meaning of all these signs varies especially according to the instrument concerned.

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