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: a group of singers and dancers in an ancient Greek play who take part in or talk about the things that are happening on stage
: a group of singers and dancers in a modern play, musical show, etc.
: a large group of singers
Full Definition of CHORUS
a: a company of singers and dancers in Athenian drama participating in or commenting on the action; also: a similar company in later plays
b: a character in Elizabethan drama who speaks the prologue and epilogue and comments on the action
c: an organized company of singers who sing in concert :choir; especially: a body of singers who sing the choral parts of a work (as in opera)
d: a group of dancers and singers supporting the featured players in a musical comedy or revue
a: a part of a song or hymn recurring at intervals
b: the part of a drama sung or spoken by the chorus
c: a composition to be sung by a number of voices in concert
d: the main part of a popular song; also: a jazz variation on a melodic theme
a: something performed, sung, or uttered simultaneously or unanimously by a number of persons or animals <a chorus of boos><that eternal chorus of: “Are we there yet?” from the back seat — Sheila More>
b: sounds so uttered <visitors are taken to the woods by car to hear the mournful choruses of howling wolves — Bob Gaines>
In theatre, a group of actors, singers, or dancers who perform as an ensemble to describe and comment on a play's action. Choral performances, which originated in the singing of dithyrambs in honour of Dionysus, dominated Greek drama until the mid-5th century BC, when Aeschylus added a second actor and reduced the chorus from 50 to 12 performers. As the importance of individual actors increased, the chorus gradually disappeared. It was revived in modern plays such as Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra (1931) and T.S. Eliot's Murder in the Cathedral (1935). Choruses of singers and dancers came to be featured in musical comedies, especially in the 20th century, first as entertainment and later to help develop the plot.