performance

noun
per·​for·​mance | \ pər-ˈfȯr-mən(t)s How to pronounce performance (audio) , pə-\

Definition of performance

1a : the execution of an action
b : something accomplished : deed, feat
2 : the fulfillment of a claim, promise, or request : implementation
3a : the action of representing a character in a play
b : a public presentation or exhibition a benefit performance
4a : the ability to perform : efficiency
b : the manner in which a mechanism performs engine performance
5 : the manner of reacting to stimuli : behavior
6 : the linguistic behavior of an individual : parole also : the ability to speak a certain language — compare competence sense 1c

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Examples of performance in a Sentence

This evening's performance will start at 8 o'clock. The hall is usually used for orchestra performances. The critics loved her performance as the villain. A supervisor will evaluate each employee's performance. employees with strong job performances Employees are given an annual performance assessment. The gas additive improves engine performance. an increased level of performance We've introduced new performance levels.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Yeah, this is a performance mainly based on hairstyles. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Why Les Misérables's Dominic West Thinks Jean Valjean Is a Better Hero Than Spiderman," 15 Apr. 2019 The rest of the Breakthrough soundtrack features a number of country artists, making a performance of a song from the album a natural fit for the ACM Awards. Heather Finn, Good Housekeeping, "Fans Are LOSING It Over Chrissy Metz's ACM Awards Performance Last Night," 8 Apr. 2019 During the group performance round, Katy called on a girl quartet and claimed that one member needed to volunteer to not go on to the next round. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'American Idol' Fans Are FURIOUS With Luke Bryan Over His "Cruel" Joke on Monday Night’s Episode," 26 Mar. 2019 Her flawless performances and adorable personality (not to mention her relationship with runner-up, Caleb Lee Hutchinson) stole the judges’ hearts, eventually earning her the title of champion. Megan Stein, Country Living, "'American Idol' Winner Maddie Poppe Is Unrecognizable in the New Season," 24 Mar. 2019 Specifically, in the McCourt, the performance hall whose retractable shell is the signature flourish of the 200,000-square-foot structure’s flexible design. Chloe Malle, Town & Country, "Is the Shed the Defining Arts Institution of a New New York City?," 14 Mar. 2019 Intel Intel’s Client Computing Group saw strong demand for its higher-performance products, including gaming. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Intel addresses processor shortages, CEO hunt after reporting disappointing fourth-quarter results," 24 Jan. 2019 Trump initially announced the across-the-board pay freeze in August, saying the federal government couldn’t sustain the cost-of-living pay increase and that raises should be tied to performance. Amanda Sakuma, Vox, "Trump orders federal pay freeze for 2019," 30 Dec. 2018 This allows the network to achieve high performance with far fewer training examples. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "How computers got shockingly good at recognizing images," 18 Dec. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Statistics for performance

Last Updated

18 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for performance

The first known use of performance was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for performance

performance

noun

English Language Learners Definition of performance

: an activity (such as singing a song or acting in a play) that a person or group does to entertain an audience
: the way an actor performs a part in a play, movie, etc.
somewhat formal : the act of doing a job, an activity, etc.

performance

noun
per·​for·​mance | \ pər-ˈfȯr-məns How to pronounce performance (audio) \

Kids Definition of performance

1 : the carrying out of an action He's in the performance of his duty.
2 : a public entertainment We attended a symphony performance.

performance

noun
per·​for·​mance

Legal Definition of performance

1 : work done in employment unsatisfactory performance
2a : what is required to be performed in fulfillment of a contract, promise, or obligation substituted a new performance in novation of the contract
b : the fulfillment of a contract, promise, or obligation
part performance
1 : partial performance of a contract, promise, or obligation
2 : a doctrine which provides an exception to the Statute of Frauds requirement that a contract be in writing by treating partial performance and the acceptance of it by the other party as evidence of an enforceable contract — compare partial breach at breach
specific performance
1 : the complete or exact fulfillment of the terms of a contract, promise, or obligation
2 : an equitable remedy that requires a party to fulfill the exact terms of a contract, promise, obligation, or decree mandating a remedy and that is used when legal remedies (as damages) are inadequate the common law prohibition against specific performance as a remedy for alleged breach of employment contractChady v. Solomon Schechter Day Schs., 645 N.E.2d 983 (1995) — compare injunction
substantial performance
1 : performance of the essential terms of a contract, promise, or obligation a contractor is not entitled to a lien in the absence of substantial performanceCasa Linda Tile & Marble Installers, Inc. v. Highlands Place 1981 Ltd., 642 So. 2d 766 (1994)
2 : a doctrine which permits a party (as a builder) that acted in good faith to recover from the other party to a contract for a performance that departs in minor respects from what was promised — compare material breach at breach
3 : a public rendition or presentation of an artistic work

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