Use the noun choreography to describe the plan for how dancers will move on a stage during a show, play, or dance. You might particularly love the choreography in the movie "West Side Story."

You can use the word choreography to mean "dance" or "ballet," but its specific meaning is the notation a choreographer makes on paper as she plans out the complex movements and steps made by dancers. Choreography is particularly important in musical theater, ballet, opera, and dance recitals. The Greek roots of choreography are khoreia, "dance," and graphein, "to write."

Definitions of choreography
  1. noun
    a show involving artistic dancing
    synonyms: stage dancing
    see moresee less
    show 15 types...
    hide 15 types...
    ballet, concert dance
    a theatrical representation of a story that is performed to music by trained dancers
    modern dance
    a style of theatrical dancing that is not as restricted as classical ballet; movements are expressive of feelings
    apache dance
    a violent fast dance in French vaudeville (an apache is a member of the French underworld)
    belly dance, belly dancing, danse du ventre
    a Middle Eastern dance in which the dancer makes sensuous movements of the hips and abdomen
    a Spanish dance in triple time accompanied by guitar and castanets
    a strutting dance based on a march; was performed in minstrel shows; originated as a competition among Black dancers to win a cake
    a high-kicking dance of French origin performed by a female chorus line
    nude dancing
    erotic dancing with little or no clothing
    classical ballet
    a style of ballet based on precise conventional steps performed with graceful and flowing movements
    modern ballet
    a style of ballet that admits a wider variety of movements
    comedy ballet
    a ballet that stresses the drama with features of comedy
    fan dance
    a solo dance in which large fans are manipulated to suggest or reveal nakedness
    strip, strip show, striptease
    a form of erotic entertainment in which a dancer gradually undresses to music
    bubble dance
    a solo dance similar to a fan dance except large balloons are used instead of fans
    interpretative dance, interpretative dancing, interpretive dance, interpretive dancing
    a form of modern dance in which the dancer's movements depict an emotion or tell a story
    type of:
    dance, dancing, saltation, terpsichore
    taking a series of rhythmical steps (and movements) in time to music
    a social event involving a public performance or entertainment
  2. noun
    the representation of dancing by symbols as music is represented by notes
    see moresee less
    type of:
    an artistic form of nonverbal communication
  3. noun
    a notation used by choreographers
    see moresee less
    a system of notation for dance movements that uses symbols to represent points on a dancer's body and the direction of the dancer's movement and the tempo and the dynamics
    type of:
    notation, notational system
    a technical system of symbols used to represent special things
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week