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 choreography (audio) \ adjective
choreographically \ ˌkȯr-​ē-​ə-​ˈgra-​fi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce choreography (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 Mostly, Twitter was stunned and impressed by the elaborate choreography, especially because the model-turned-singer has developed a reputation in the past for her awkward dance moves — which went viral on social media a few years ago. Christi Carras, Los Angeles Times, "Dua Lipa’s fans are so proud of her ‘growth’ with those Grammys dance moves," 14 Mar. 2021 The choreography matches Gershwin’s composition in nuance, not only reflecting the vagaries of two musical genres, but flitting rhythmically from subtlety to fanfare. David L. Coddon, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Arts & Culture Newsletter: Ziggy Marley at the Belly Up: ‘Music will be in the house, even if people aren’t’," 11 Mar. 2021 The martial-arts choreography incorporates moves from fighting styles such as muay thai and krabi-krabong. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "Raya and the Last Dragon and the Limits of an Authentic Fantasy World," 6 Mar. 2021 The track also arrives with a video, directed by Tim Nackashi, that finds Thorburn performing the song and dancing alongside Gigi Todisco, who also handled the choreography. Jon Blistein, Rolling Stone, "Islands Preview First Album in Five Years With ‘(We Like To) Do It With the Lights On’," 3 Mar. 2021 But working on the High Republic series is a different kind of choreography. Washington Post, "The future of Star Wars has arrived, and it takes place hundreds of years in the past," 23 Feb. 2021 The reverent score and the interplay between unmediated color footage and black-and-white security-camera footage will give you the chills, as will some of the choreography. Isaac Schorr, National Review, "The Mandalorian’s Second Season Gives Star Wars Fans Their Fix," 26 Dec. 2020 Everyone was given a video of the choreography and practiced at home prior to an 8-hour dress rehearsal and a two-day shoot. Jayme Deerwester, USA TODAY, "Attention, '80s music fans: Alaska Airlines parodies 'Safety Dance' in new video," 16 Dec. 2020 What is the root of the choreography in that opening moment? New York Times, "Catch the Vibe: Club Culture Comes to Life at Lincoln Center," 15 Nov. 2020

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

10 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Choreography.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for choreography



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

More from Merriam-Webster on choreography

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

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