bal·​let | \ ˈba-ˌlā How to pronounce ballet (audio) , ba-ˈlā\

Definition of ballet

1a : a theatrical art form using dancing, music, and scenery to convey a story, theme, or atmosphere
b : dancing in which conventional poses and steps are combined with light flowing figures (such as leaps and turns)
2 : music for a ballet
3 : a group that performs ballets
4 : something likened to a ballet especially in complexity and precision of movement Where else can you peek into the kitchen and see a quiet ballet of cooks, their entire attention focused on feeding a mere 65 people?— Ruth Reichl Rather, it is people and the daily ballet of urban life that make a city.— Steven Earnest et al.

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Other Words from ballet

balletic \ ba-​ˈle-​tik How to pronounce balletic (audio) \ adjective

Examples of ballet in a Sentence

She does tap dancing and ballet. We are going to a ballet tonight. This is one of my favorite ballets.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The ballet had long outgrown the National Avenue digs, resulting in cramped, makeshift solutions everywhere. Jim Higgins, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Sneak peek: Milwaukee Ballet opens new Third Ward home, the Baumgartner Center for Dance," 1 Sep. 2019 A century later, the ballet remains a holiday classic and a staple of the Moscow Ballet’s annual tour. Mary Carole Mccauley,, "Top Baltimore arts events for fall 2019," 29 Aug. 2019 The elegant room is split across four levels, tailor-made for opera and ballet performances by touring global groups. Sarvesh Talreja, National Geographic, "Cairo beyond the pyramids: The ultimate itinerary," 30 July 2019 Just a few years later, the professional arm of the ballet school, the California Ballet Company, offered to train her in an apprenticeship program to become a professional dancer. Ramona Sentinel, "Emily Payne shares love of dancing, pageantry," 25 July 2019 The subjects — which range from ballet to Pokemon, quantum reality to the Marvel Cinematic Universe — generally are not covered by traditional curriculum. Cicero Estrella, The Mercury News, "Adulting 101: Cal students teach course on ‘how to live in the real world and function as an adult’," 27 Aug. 2019 Thus sets in motion a series of dance performances from ballet to contortionist backed by different pieces of music including opera and spoken word. Trevor Fraser,, "Review: Luna - Fringe 2018," 14 May 2018 In total, 14 students from across Southern California were named finalists in seven categories ranging from ballet to classical voice. Andy Nguyen,, "Area teens win $5,000 scholarships from arts-training program," 4 May 2018 Linda created the name Mojalet by combing letters from dance genres: m-o from modern, j-a from jazz, and l-e-t from ballet. Lisa Deaderick,, "Taking a chance on dance led to a new career," 5 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ballet.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of ballet

1608, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for ballet

French, from Italian balletto, diminutive of ballo dance, from ballare

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Statistics for ballet

Last Updated

20 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for ballet

The first known use of ballet was in 1608

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More Definitions for ballet



English Language Learners Definition of ballet

: a kind of dancing that is performed on a stage and that uses dance, music, costumes, and scenery to tell a story
: a show in which ballet is performed
: a group of dancers who perform ballets together


bal·​let | \ ˈba-ˌlā How to pronounce ballet (audio) , ba-ˈlā\

Kids Definition of ballet

1 : a stage dance that tells a story in movement and pantomime
2 : a group that performs ballets

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More from Merriam-Webster on ballet

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ballet

Spanish Central: Translation of ballet

Nglish: Translation of ballet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ballet for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about ballet

Comments on ballet

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