play·​bill | \ ˈplā-ˌbil How to pronounce playbill (audio) \

Definition of playbill

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a bill advertising a play and usually announcing the cast



Definition of Playbill (Entry 2 of 2)

used for a theater program

Examples of playbill in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

An eclectic menu that spotlights California’s agricultural bounty is on the playbill too. New York Times, "36 Hours in Napa Valley," 21 June 2018 The playbill guarantees at least three additional acts, plenty of time leftover for more fun and games. Alex Prewitt,, "Golden Knights, Capitals Provide Game 1 Cup Final Spectacle Fitting for Vegas," 29 May 2018 Judging by Guadalupe's description of it, and the show's playbill information, the company's new evening-length story ballet is completely out of the ordinary. Zachary Lewis,, "Cleveland Ballet venturing 'out of the box' with new 'Alice' (preview)," 7 May 2018 That's not a playbill likely to put the historic Flagstar Strand, or for that matter downtown Pontiac itself, back on the mental maps of Oakland County’s affluent, concert-hungry residents. Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press, "Pride, history, tax dollars at stake in renovation of Pontiac theater," 6 May 2018 Well, no yellowface here, as the surnames in the playbill — Lim, Panmeechao, Oh, Ozeki — attest. Kerry Lengel, azcentral, "Theater review: Do Asian actors make ‘The King and I’ more ‘authentic’ at ASU Gammage?," 21 Mar. 2018 Here’s a playbill credit one doesn’t see often: Pie consultant. Lauren Delgado,, "'Waitress' pie consultant will make some sweet visuals for Dr. Phillips performance," 17 Mar. 2018 The scrolling credits and the fine print in the playbill record a strict division of labor. A. O. Scott, New York Times, "The Return of the Artistic Company," 18 Feb. 2018 At 88, Cleveland's grande dame of theater keeps moving forward, with a full playbill of shows on the horizon. Laura Demarco,, "Love story: Dorothy Silver and Theatre in the Circle bring poignant 'Love Letters' to life for Valentine's Day," 4 Feb. 2018

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


1616, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near playbill


play back






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Time Traveler for playbill

The first known use of playbill was in 1616

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English Language Learners Definition of playbill

: a poster or piece of paper that advertises a play

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with playbill

Comments on playbill

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


an act or instance of returning to life

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