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

Definition of playbill

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a bill (see bill entry 4 sense 5a) advertising a public performance or set of performances A playbill—an early poster—advertising Shakespeare's Hamlet at Newcastle's original Theatre Royal in Mosley Street in December 1791 was discovered among prints bought in an auction sale …— Evening Chronicle So the two began plastering up playbills and cultivating a badboy image.— Logan Hill



Definition of Playbill (Entry 2 of 2)

used for a theater program (see program entry 1 sense 2a)

Examples of playbill in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Despite being associated with just one number in the production, Bob Fosse gets by far the longest biographical blurb in the playbill. Christopher Arnott, Hartford Courant, 1 June 2022 Intagliata: In other words—this work lays out a more definitive playbill of the acts in this galactic drama. Christopher Intagliata, Scientific American, 5 Apr. 2022 At the end of the night, guests will get to take home a copy of the playbill signed by the stars of the show. Cailey Rizzo, Travel + Leisure, 17 Nov. 2021 For more information about the event, sponsorships, playbill advertising, or donor opportunities, contact Menorah Park Director of Special Events Renee Geller at, at 216-839-6623, or by visiting cleveland, 24 July 2021 Beck Center for the Arts, like many theaters today, is experimenting with an all-digital playbill accessed via their website/QP code rather than a hard copy program. Shirley Macfarland, cleveland, 23 July 2021 The Book of Mormon, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints did not stage a Catholic League–style tantrum but instead took out a series of wry advertisements in the playbill, inviting theater-goers to receive a copy of the Mormon scriptures. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, 23 June 2021 The goal was first to be fair and chronicle the events leading to the mascot change, according to the show’s playbill. Christopher Arnott,, 24 May 2021 Maybe that would be considered a distraction anywhere else in the NFL, but in Jacksonville Tim Tebow can’t be anything but the first name on the playbill. Joseph Goodman |, al, 13 May 2021 See More

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.

First Known Use of playbill


1610, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of playbill was in 1610

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Cite this Entry

“Playbill.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Aug. 2022.

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