re·​hears·​al | \ri-ˈhər-səl \

Definition of rehearsal 

1 : something recounted or told again : recital

2a : a private performance or practice session preparatory to a public appearance

b : a practice exercise : trial

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Synonyms for rehearsal


dry run, practice (also practise), trial

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Examples of rehearsal in a Sentence

She was 15 minutes late to rehearsal. There are only three more rehearsals before the concert.

Recent Examples on the Web

Gathered from Greenbaum's studies, this version aims for authenticity, with a handful of actors, a shoestring budget and fragmented rehearsal time. Anchorage Daily News, "Coming up: a new brewery debut, Spectrum music festival and Bear Paw," 13 July 2018 Shared a lot of laughs and fun in rehearsals this past week! Alessandra Rincón, Billboard, "Britney Spears Reunites With Dance Crew Before 'Piece Of Me' Tour Kick-Off: Watch," 10 July 2018 Again, this was technical rehearsal, but also this is light being projected at a distance onto moving droplets of water in the dark. Dewayne Bevil,, "First look: 'Universal Orlando's Cinematic Celebration'," 10 July 2018 His shots from that period show Streisand backstage at rehearsals for CBS specials and at fashion shows beside Coco Chanel and Marlene Dietrich. Morgan Sykes, The Cut, "Never-Before-Seen Photos of Barbra Streisand," 22 Apr. 2018 At this rehearsal, family members bobbed heads and tapped toes, as the dancers moved in synch to booming drums, rattling tambourines and the pop of a cowbell by Josefina Castillo, a member since KaZamba was formed in 2002. Vincent T. Davis, San Antonio Express-News, "Dance and drum group KaZamba ready to thrill Fiesta crowds," 19 Mar. 2018 Savren-McCormick met the woman who saved her for the first time at the wedding rehearsal, reports ABC News. Danielle Garrand, CBS News, "3-year-old cancer survivor is flower girl in bone marrow donor's wedding," 1 July 2018 Meanwhile, Kris and Kaci’s 2-year-old daughter is getting groomed for the family business having been at the rehearsals almost every night herself. David Taylor, Houston Chronicle, "‘Beauty’ a family affair for one Liberty family," 26 June 2018 The annual drills, separate from regular training programs, have long angered North Korea’s leadership, which views them as a rehearsal for an invasion. Daniel Flatley,, "Trump Suspends South Korea ‘War Games’ in Bet Kim Can Be Trusted," 12 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near rehearsal





rehearsal dinner



Statistics for rehearsal

Last Updated

27 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for rehearsal

The first known use of rehearsal was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for rehearsal



English Language Learners Definition of rehearsal

: an event at which a person or group practices an activity (such as singing, dancing, or acting) in order to prepare for a public performance


re·​hears·​al | \ri-ˈhər-səl \

Kids Definition of rehearsal

: a private performance or practice session in preparation for a public appearance


re·​hears·​al | \ri-ˈhər-səl \

Medical Definition of rehearsal 

1 : a method for improving memory by mentally or verbally repeating over and over the information to be remembered

2 : the repeated mental review of a desired action or behavioral response preoperative rehearsal of coping imagery to reduce anxiety

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Comments on rehearsal

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


to express warning or disapproval

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