cho·​re·​og·​ra·​phy | \ ˌkȯr-ē-ˈä-grə-fē How to pronounce choreography (audio) \
plural choreographies

Definition of choreography

1 : the art of symbolically representing dancing
2a : the composition and arrangement of dances especially for ballet
b : a composition created by this art
3 : something resembling choreography a snail-paced choreography of delicate high diplomacy— Wolfgang Saxon

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Other Words from choreography

choreographic \ ˌkȯr-​ē-​ə-​ˈgra-​fik How to pronounce choreographic (audio) \ adjective
choreographically \ ˌkȯr-​ē-​ə-​ˈgra-​fi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce choreographically (audio) \ adverb

Did You Know?

In ancient Greece, a choreia was a circular dance accompanied by a singing chorus. But the actual notating of dances by means of symbols didn't begin until the 17th or 18th century, when ballet developed into a complex art form in France. The choreographer of a major ballet, which might run to an hour or more, will always record his or her work in notation, though choreographing a five-minute segment for a TV talent show usually doesn't require any record at all.

Examples of choreography in a Sentence

He has an interest in choreography. a show with excellent choreography
Recent Examples on the Web Directed by Tony winner Rebecca Taichman (Indecent), Sing Street features a book by Enda Walsh, music and lyrics by Gary Clark and John Carney, and choreography by Sonya Tayeh. Maureen Lee Lenker,, "Sing Street to transfer to Broadway this spring," 8 Jan. 2020 The choreography by Jeff and Rick Kuperman is mostly performed as a sort of incidental sideshow, with hackneyed slow-mo effects that presumably are meant to suggest how love transforms time. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Review: Peter Dinklage Tackles ‘Cyrano’ Without the Nose," 7 Nov. 2019 Headed by guest conductor Sameer Patel, the evening also includes choreography by Chicago’s own Mandala South Asian Performing Arts. Web Behrens,, "15 things to do in the Chicago area with the kids Nov. 4-10," 3 Nov. 2019 Event features live music by Bobby Levy and choreography by Iván Espinosa. Houston Chronicle, "The Go List: Nelly, Veganchill," 22 Aug. 2019 Matt Cooper has his weekend picks, as well as the week ahead in music, art, theater and dance, including a choreography by Chris Emile that tackles the plight of refugees. Los Angeles Times, "Newsletter: Essential Arts: Why are four L.A. spaces celebrating a radical San Francisco gallery?," 3 Aug. 2019 The production is directed by Will Crosby and features choreography by Jen Justice and musical direction by Bret Cowden. Joan Rusek,, "Chagrin Valley Little Theater cast brings ‘Young Frankenstein’ to life," 19 July 2019 With music direction by David Freeman Coleman and choreography by Yewande Odetoyinbo and Ruka White. Maura Johnston,, "Folk & World," 20 Sep. 2018 Tate, a second tenor in the 250-member musical group, loves the ballads, the old songs, the challenging modern pieces and the choreography. Steve Rubenstein,, "SF Gay Men’s Chorus member’s voice is a gift he’ll deliver on Christmas Eve," 23 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'choreography.' 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 choreography

circa 1789, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for choreography

French chorégraphie, from Greek choreia + French -graphie -graphy

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Time Traveler for choreography

Time Traveler

The first known use of choreography was circa 1789

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Statistics for choreography

Last Updated

16 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Choreography.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 19 January 2020.

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More Definitions for choreography


How to pronounce choreography (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of choreography

: the art or job of deciding how dancers will move in a performance also : the movements that are done by dancers in a performance


cho·​re·​og·​ra·​phy | \ ˌkȯr-ē-ˈä-grə-fē How to pronounce choreography (audio) \

Kids Definition of choreography

1 : the art of arranging the movements of dancers for a performance and especially a ballet
2 : the arrangement of a dance The choreography for the video won an award.

Other Words from choreography

choreographer \ -​fər \ noun

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Spanish Central: Translation of choreography

Nglish: Translation of choreography for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about choreography

Comments on choreography

What made you want to look up choreography? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to insert between existing elements

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