Other forms: thespians

Thespian is a fancy word for actor. Since this word is related to Thespis, the guy who first took the stage in Ancient Greece, you can feel real scholarly using the word thespian.

As an adjective, you can use the word thespian to describe something that is related to drama. If you enjoy theater, you can say you enjoy thespian pursuits. Many high school drama clubs offer Thespian status to club members who earn a certain number of points by acting in shows or working on backstage tech for them. Note that the word thespian is sometimes capitalized because it is taken from a person's name.

Definitions of thespian
  1. noun
    a theatrical performer
    synonyms: actor, histrion, player, role player
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    Allen Stewart Konigsberg
    United States filmmaker and comic actor (1935-)
    Fred Astaire
    United States dancer and cinema actor noted for his original and graceful tap dancing (1899-1987)
    Maurice Barrymore
    United States actor; husband of Georgiana Emma Barrymore and father of Ethel Barrymore and John Barrymore and Lionel Barrymore (1847-1905)
    Lionel Barrymore
    United States actor; son of Maurice Barrymore and Georgiana Barrymore (1878-1954)
    John Barrymore
    United States actor; son of Maurice Barrymore and Georgiana Barrymore (1882-1942)
    Humphrey DeForest Bogart
    United States film actor (1899-1957)
    John Wilkes Booth
    United States actor and assassin of President Lincoln (1838-1865)
    Richard Burbage
    English actor who was the first to play the leading role in several of Shakespeare's tragedies (1567-1619)
    Richard Burton
    Welsh film actor who often co-starred with Elizabeth Taylor (1925-1984)
    James Cagney
    United States film actor known for his portrayals of tough characters (1899-1986)
    Maurice Chevalier
    French actor and cabaret singer (1888-1972)
    Frank Cooper
    United States film actor noted for his portrayals of strong silent heroes (1901-1961)
    Sir Noel Pierce Coward
    English dramatist and actor and composer noted for his witty and sophisticated comedies (1899-1973)
    Hume Blake Cronyn
    Canadian actor who frequently played character parts with his wife Jessica Tandy (1911-2003)
    Harry Lillis Crosby
    United States singer and film actor (1904-1977)
    James Byron Dean
    United States film actor whose moody rebellious roles made him a cult figure (1931-1955)
    Robert De Niro
    United States film actor who frequently plays tough characters (born 1943)
    Gerard Depardieu
    French film actor (born in 1948)
    John Drew
    United States actor (born in Ireland); father of Georgiana Emma Barrymore (1827-1862)
    Douglas Elton Fairbanks
    United States film actor noted for his swashbuckling roles (1883-1939)
    Douglas Fairbanks Jr.
    United States film actor; son of Douglas Elton Fairbanks, (1909-2000)
    Henry Fonda
    United States film actor (1905-1982)
    William Clark Gable
    United States film actor (1901-1960)
    David Garrick
    English actor and theater manager who was the foremost Shakespearean actor of his day (1717-1779)
    Mel Columcille Gerard Gibson
    Australian actor (born in the United States in 1956)
    Arthur John Gielgud
    English actor of Shakespearean roles who was also noted for appearances in films (1904-2000)
    Cary Grant
    United States actor (born in England) who was the elegant leading man in many films (1904-1986)
    Harley Granville-Barker
    English actor and dramatist and critic and director noted for his productions of Shakespearean plays (1877-1946)
    Sir Alec Guinness
    English stage and screen actor noted for versatility (1914-2000)
    Thomas J. Hanks
    United States film actor (born in 1956)
    Reginald Carey Harrison
    English actor on stage and in films (1908-1990)
    John Hemminge
    English actor who edited the first folio of Shakespeare's plays (1556-1630)
    Dustin Hoffman
    versatile United States film actor (born in 1937)
    Sir Anthony Philip Hopkins
    Welsh film actor (born in 1937)
    Leslie Howard Stainer
    English actor of stage and screen (1893-1943)
    Asa Yoelson
    United States singer (born in Russia) who appeared in the first full-length talking film (1886-1950)
    William Henry Pratt
    United States film actor (born in England) noted for his performances in horror films (1887-1969)
    Edmund Kean
    English actor noted for his portrayals of Shakespeare's great tragic characters (1789-1833)
    Joseph Francis Keaton
    United States comedian and actor in silent films noted for his acrobatic skills and deadpan face (1895-1966)
    Eugene Curran Kelly
    United States dancer who performed in many musical films (1912-1996)
    Charles Laughton
    United States film actor (born in England) (1899-1962)
    Lee Yuen Kam
    United States actor who was an expert in kung fu and starred in martial arts films (1941-1973)
    Jack Lemmon
    United States film actor (1925-2001)
    Harold Clayton Lloyd
    United States comic actor in silent films; he used physical danger as a source of comedy (1893-1971)
    Laszlo Lowestein
    United States actor (born in Hungary) noted for playing sinister roles (1904-1964)
    Bela Ferenc Blasko
    United States film actor (born in Hungary) noted for portraying monsters (1884-1956)
    Alfred Lunt
    United States actor who performed with his wife Lynn Fontanne in many stage productions (1893-1977)
    E. G. Marshall
    United States actor (1914-1998)
    Steve Martin
    United States actor and comedian (born in 1945)
    James Neville Mason
    English film actor (1909-1984)
    Robert Mitchum
    United States film actor (1917-1997)
    Dudley Stuart John Moore
    English actor and comedian who appeared on television and in films (born in 1935)
    Paul Leonard Newman
    United States film actor (born in 1925)
    Baron Olivier of Birghton
    English actor best know for his Shakespearean roles (1907-1989)
    Peter Seamus O'Toole
    British actor (born in Ireland in 1932)
    Sidney Poitier
    United States film actor and director (born in 1927)
    Charles Robert Redford
    United States actor and filmmaker who starred with Paul Newman in several films (born in 1936)
    Sir Ralph David Richardson
    British stage and screen actor noted for playing classic roles (1902-1983)
    Edward Goldenberg Robinson
    United States film actor noted for playing gangster roles (1893-1973)
    George C. Scott
    award-winning United States film actor (1928-1999)
    Peter Sellers
    English comic actor (1925-1980)
    Francis Albert Sinatra
    United States singer and film actor (1915-1998)
    Otis Skinner
    United States actor (1858-1942)
    Konstantin Sergeyevich Stanislavsky
    Russian actor and theater director who trained his actors to emphasize the psychological motivation of their roles (1863-1938)
    James Maitland Stewart
    United States film actor who portrayed incorruptible but modest heros (1908-1997)
    Israel Strassberg
    United States actor and film director (born in Austria) who was a leader in developing method acting in the United States (1901-1982)
    Erich von Stroheim
    United States film actor (born in Austria) (1885-1957)
    Spencer Tracy
    United States film actor who appeared in many films with Katharine Hepburn (1900-1967)
    Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree
    English actor and theatrical producer noted for his lavish productions of Shakespeare (1853-1917)
    Peter Alexander Ustinov
    British actor and playwright (1921-2004)
    Duke Wayne
    United States film actor who played tough heroes (1907-1979)
    George Orson Welles
    United States actor and filmmaker (1915-1985)
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    a female actor
    barnstormer, play-actor, playactor, trouper
    an actor who travels around the country presenting plays
    character actor
    an actor who specializes in playing supporting roles
    an actor in a comedy
    ham, ham actor
    an unskilled actor who overacts
    an actor who plays villainous roles
    an actress who specializes in playing the role of an artless innocent young girl
    leading man
    actor who plays the leading male role
    mime, mimer, mummer, pantomimer, pantomimist
    an actor who communicates entirely by gesture and facial expression
    an actor situated in the audience whose acting is rehearsed but seems spontaneous to the audience
    a person who enacts a role in an event that occurred earlier
    an actor who draws more attention than other actors in the same scene
    movie actor, screen actor
    an actor who plays a role in a film
    lead, principal, star
    an actor who plays a principal role
    extra, spear carrier, supernumerary
    a minor actor in crowd scenes
    an actor who specializes in tragic roles
    standby, understudy
    an actor able to replace a regular performer when required
    a selfish actor who upstages the other actors
    plays a small part in a dramatic production
    a female actor in a comedy
    one of two actors who are given equal status as stars in a play or film
    film star, movie star
    a star who plays leading roles in the cinema
    icon, idol, matinee idol
    someone who is adored blindly and excessively
    leading lady
    actress who plays the leading female role
    a young (film) actress who is publicized as a future star
    TV star, television star
    a star in a television show
    an actress who specializes in tragic roles
    type of:
    performer, performing artist
    an entertainer who performs a dramatic or musical work for an audience
  2. adjective
    of or relating to drama
    “the movie director had thespian cooperation”
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