en·​sem·​ble | \ än-ˈsäm-bəl How to pronounce ensemble (audio) , äⁿ-\

Definition of ensemble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a group producing a single effect: such as
a : concerted music of two or more parts
b : a complete costume of harmonizing or complementary clothing and accessories
c(1) : the musicians engaged in the performance of a musical ensemble
(2) : a group of supporting players, singers, or dancers especially : corps de ballet



Definition of ensemble (Entry 2 of 2)

: emphasizing the roles of all performers as a whole rather than a star performance ensemble acting

Examples of ensemble in a Sentence

Noun We went to listen to a new jazz ensemble. She wore an elegant three-piece ensemble. The actor performed an ensemble piece.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The two came dressed in matching ensembles, similar to the characters Anna and Elsa from the movie. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Selena Gomez and Little Sister Gracie Match in Marc Jacobs at the Frozen 2 Premiere," 8 Nov. 2019 The designer styled her favorite footwear with a typically posh ensemble, pairing an argyle wool sweater, layered over a button-up shirt, with a checkered, below-the-knee skirt. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Victoria Beckham Brings Her Favorite Rule-Breaking Boots to the Airport," 6 Nov. 2019 Olivia Newton-John‘s iconic ensemble from the hit musical Grease sold for top dollar at Julien’s Auction on Saturday. Rosy Cordero, EW.com, "Olivia Newton-John's iconic Grease outfit sells at auction for $405,700," 3 Nov. 2019 After stopping to sing some of the song and dance, the action moved inside with a group of Western dancers as Ripa and Seacrest took the stage wearing sparklier Western ensembles, complete with sequins and fringe. Hilary Lewis, The Hollywood Reporter, "Talk Shows Celebrate Halloween With Multiple Versions of Olivia Newton-John, John Travolta, Pennywise," 31 Oct. 2019 To complete the creepy and kooky ensemble, Kelly's husband, Mark Consuelos, put on a Gomez costume, producer Michael Gelman played Lurch, and executive in charge Art Moore donned an Uncle Fester get-up. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "Kelly Ripa Is Shocked After Fans Mistake Her for Her Daughter Lola in Halloween Instagram," 29 Oct. 2019 At several points during the show, Allen leads the ensemble in its sung numbers, swerving away from simple melody and into swooping, soaring gospel or foreboding blues. Vinson Cunningham, The New Yorker, "An Ecstatic Revival of Ntozake Shange’s “for colored girls”," 28 Oct. 2019 This exhibition features some of these artistic ensembles, aspects of which evoke the body and nod playfully to BDSM. Los Angeles Times, "Datebook: How L.A. photographer George Rodriguez chronicled every corner of the city," 17 Oct. 2019 The cast functioned wonderfully as an ensemble, blending together to form one group of disciples. Brooke Coughlan, Cincinnati.com, "Cappies reviews for 'Godspell' by Roger Bacon High School," 22 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective And Lyric Opera Chorus master Michael Black crafted ensemble singing of considerable ferocity, especially in the first act’s nightmarish finale. Howard Reich, chicagotribune.com, "Lyric Opera review: ‘Dead Man Walking’ powerfully probes guilt and redemption," 3 Nov. 2019 By the second episode, Mrs. Fletcher grows into more of an ensemble endeavor. Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, "In Mrs. Fletcher, Porn Is the Path to Self-Discovery," 28 Oct. 2019 The stride piano playing, ensemble group playing, and intensely energetic and complex dance-music culture that blossomed in the clubs in Harlem went on to shape music-making around the world. John Adamian, courant.com, "Harlem 100, celebrating 1920s explosion of creativity, coming to Jorgensen," 18 Oct. 2019 Even for a company that regularly outfits professional athletes, executives at Under Armour said there was a steep learning curve to design an ensemble fit for spaceflight. Jackie Wattles, CNN, "Virgin Galactic unveils Under Armour spacesuits," 16 Oct. 2019 If the equation merely describes ensemble behavior, this scenario is quite unnecessary. Quanta Magazine, "How Randomness Can Arise From Determinism," 14 Oct. 2019 For her first day, Princess Ariane kept her ensemble simple — sneakers paired with a black jacket and pants, accessorized with a green backpack. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, "Princess Ariane of the Netherlands Heads to First Day of High School — the Dutch Way!," 3 Sep. 2019 Two large ensemble works in all black couldn’t have been more different. Karen Campbell, BostonGlobe.com, "Provocation and playfulness in Boston Contemporary Dance Festival performances," 11 Aug. 2019 The ensemble drama about a group of friends whose lives were rocked by the death of one of their own returns for Season 2. oregonlive, "Fall TV 2019: Premiere dates for new shows and returning favorites," 31 Aug. 2019

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


1750, in the meaning defined above


circa 1911, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ensemble


French, from ensemble together, from Old French, from Latin insimul at the same time, from in- + simul at the same time — more at same

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Statistics for ensemble

Last Updated

11 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for ensemble

The first known use of ensemble was in 1750

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More Definitions for ensemble


How to pronounce ensemble (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ensemble

: a group of people or things that make up a complete unit (such as a musical group, a group of actors or dancers, or a set of clothes)


en·​sem·​ble | \ än-ˈsäm-bəl How to pronounce ensemble (audio) \

Kids Definition of ensemble

: a group of people or things making up a complete unit a musical ensemble She wore a three-piece ensemble.

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Comments on ensemble

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


not being in agreement or harmony

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