song and dance


Definition of song and dance 

1 : a theatrical performance (such as a vaudeville performance) combining singing and dancing

2 : a long and often familiar statement or explanation that is usually not true or pertinent

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Synonyms for song and dance


double-talk, gibberish, gobbledygook (also gobbledegook), rigmarole (also rigamarole)

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Examples of song and dance in a Sentence

instead of simply denying our request, the mayor's representative gave us a song and dance about legal issues and municipal liability

Recent Examples on the Web

The show features a Native American ensemble that performs indigenous songs and dances to illuminate fables from Native American lore. Andrew R. Chow, New York Times, "New Victory Theater Season Will Bring Circus Acts and Songs," 21 June 2018 More than 800 cities will spend the day in song and dance on the streets and sidewalks, in parks and on plazas, and at major and not-so-major venues. Nyssa Kruse,, "Music To Fill Streets As Connecticut Joins Global Make Music Day," 18 June 2018 In a subtle linking of past and present, Smith dedicates her collection’s title poem to the Geechee Gullah Ring Shouters, a group of performers in Georgia preserving their culture through song and dance. Adrianna Smith, The Atlantic, "What Tracy K. Smith Sees in America," 9 June 2018 The Ronald Reagan administration made today’s song and dance commonplace, per ESPN. Conor Orr,, "Eagles Are Planning a White House Visit. But Is There a Better Use of Everyone's Time?," 17 May 2018 Rojo’s goal sent the tens of thousands of Argentina’s faithful who had traveled so far north into a wild, deafening celebration, a series of cheers and songs and dance that lasted well into the pale blue St. Petersburg night. Matthew Futterman And Andrew Das, New York Times, "Argentina Finds World Cup Salvation in Thriller Over Nigeria," 27 June 2018 At the end of the assembly, the fourth- and fifth-graders who worked on the gun violence project performed their song and dance for the rest of the school. Emma Austin, The Courier-Journal, "JCPS teacher hip-hops her way into students' minds, earning state award," 17 May 2018 Midtown Phoenix's perennial karaoke spot Kobalt is dimming its spotlight this weekend for one last song and dance before the club closes. Garrett Mitchell, azcentral, "Kobalt nightclub closes Saturday; new Park Central Mall location opens soon," 29 June 2018 The song and dance routine is partly a respite from, and partly an accompaniment to, the chaos. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Donald Glover Is Watching You Watch Him," 7 May 2018

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

1613, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near song and dance


son et lumière


song and dance



song box

Statistics for song and dance

Last Updated

29 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for song and dance

The first known use of song and dance was in 1613

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More Definitions for song and dance

song and dance


English Language Learners Definition of song and dance

: a performance that combines singing and dancing

: a long story, explanation, or excuse that may not be true or directly related to what is being discussed

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