Definition of repertory in English:



  • 1mass noun The performance of various plays, operas, or ballets by a company at regular short intervals.

    as modifier ‘a repertory actor’
    • ‘Brian Wright started writing for theatre, television and radio after several years acting in repertory, cabaret and the West End, including a year in Beyond the Fringe.’
    • ‘Ruskin Place is Seaside's ‘artist colony,’ with mixed-use buildings and a lawn for the town's repertory theater performances and art shows.’
    • ‘Because of this hodgepodge, the Theatre français de Toronto relies on classical repertory plays such as those by Michel Tremblay that the audience knows.’
    • ‘She shares the role in the CanStage production in repertory with white actor Caroline Cave.’
    • ‘North Carolina, the company will perform repertory works July 20-22, including Esplanade and Arabesque.’
    • ‘Three shows, described as a Gay Pride Season of Musical Cabaret, will be running in repertory for four weeks at the Jermyn Street Theatre, starting July 8.’
    • ‘By juxtaposing older repertory works with a premiere, these veteran Bay Area-based dancemakers offered some sense of their artistic development.’
    • ‘And in choice of both repertory and production styles, the company's tradition is to be exploratory and innovative.’
    • ‘It set me to thinking about how reactions to the performances of repertory standards have become increasingly generational over the years, and how much expectations have changed.’
    • ‘After war service he co-directed with Olivier four fabled repertory seasons by the Old Vic Company in the West End: his great Shakespearian creation was Falstaff in both parts of Henry IV.’
    • ‘Asfb begins its first season in August, with four weeks of mixed repertory performances in Santa Fe.’
    • ‘A preponderance of live music met the art deco glory of the Paramount Theatre on opening night of Oakland Ballet's third fall repertory program.’
    • ‘I love the respect for film that London has, having a National Film Theatre, how all the movie theatres show repertory on the weekends.’
    • ‘In the later 1700s Covent Garden and Drury Lane continued to provide English operas as part of the six days a week theatrical repertory.’
    • ‘Don Quixote entered the Boston Ballet repertory in 1982, with Rudolf Nureyev's staging.’
    • ‘Sonya Delwaide's Chuchotements and Joanna Haigood's Descending Cords have become standards, and both repertory pieces were beautifully performed.’
    • ‘End of Civilization has now joined Adult Entertainment, a companion play from George F. Walker's Suburban Motel series, in repertory at Factory Theatre.’
    • ‘The production is back in repertory and still well worth attending, even though there are several alterations, not all of them for the better.’
    • ‘I think that premieres and twentieth-century repertory are signs of a progressive spirit; I don't think the same of director-driven opera.’
    • ‘What a tour de force in a theater hardly equipped to carry off this sort of repertory schedule: the stagehands must have a lot of sleepless nights!’
    1. 1.1 Repertory theatres regarded collectively.
      ‘his long apprenticeship in repertory was as satisfying as what he is doing now’
      • ‘The regional repertory theatres, which had spread throughout Britain after the war, were often adventurous.’
      • ‘It was such an enormous success that it not only became a staple of Drury Lane's repertory but was also performed at Lincoln's Inn Fields and elsewhere.’
      • ‘A day in the life of a provincial repertory theatre company, who are visited by the author of their next play.’
      • ‘He became the first director of Liverpool repertory theatre in 1911, and in 1918 he was awarded an MBE for his services to national entertainment during the First World War.’
      • ‘When I graduated, I got jobs in professional theatres, repertory, and stock theatres in Canada for a couple of years.’
      • ‘As in repertory theater, actors were required to supply their own costumes, and do their own make-up.’
      • ‘Start getting experience with fringe shows and repertory theatres, particularly those with young designer programmes.’
      • ‘Despite these differences, film production was similar to the mode of production in theatrical repertory theaters.’
      • ‘The National Film Theatre is one of the best repertory film theatres in London - though less adventurous than the ICA or than it used to be itself.’
      • ‘He entered repertory theatre in the late 1940s as an actor, and then worked as a racing driver and manager for the internationally successful Stirling Moss.’
      store, supply, stockpile, reserve, hoard, cache, reservoir, accumulation, quantity, pile, heap, load
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2count noun A repertory company.
      ‘regional repertories and touring companies’
  • 2

    ‘a fair conspectus of Ferrier's repertory has been preserved for posterity’
    another term for repertoire
    • ‘It's not merely worth the occasional revival; it should be part of the active repertory of every major opera house.’
    • ‘The tide is turning on some of these questions, and the growth of ABT's dramatic ballet repertory is a good context for looking back at our recent past.’
    • ‘In much of the current Ballet Tech repertory, of course, the issue of first-class classical-dance capability doesn't arise.’
    • ‘For a while, it was one of the most frequently performed operas in the repertory, but its popularity has waned lately and the Metropolitan's current revival almost makes it seem like a novelty.’
    • ‘As an avid dance fan, I'm amazed at the vast repertory that ballet dancers must perform.’
    • ‘For reasons having little to do with music, none of the dances here have held on to the repertory, as the Stravinsky and Copland ballets have, for example.’
    • ‘The Washington Ballet's varied repertory attracted Gaither too.’
    • ‘Classic FM, Naxos and even some programmes on Radio 3 have emphasised repertory over performer, leaving new music without popular, trusted advocates.’
    • ‘We have a lot of ballets in our repertory, and we keep adding new ones.’
    • ‘I also had twenty Mozart Concerti in my repertory.’
    • ‘Its repertory featured Ballet Imperial, Concerto Barocco, Billy the Kid, The Filling Station, and Apollon musagète.’
    • ‘A credential-laden custodian of the Tudor repertory, Donald Mahler, was entrusted with the staging so that nothing would be lost in the translation.’
    • ‘The first woman pupil of Stanford at the Royal College of Music, she was also one of the leading viola-players of her time, and her prize-winning Viola Sonata is now firmly re-established in the regular repertory.’
    • ‘The Staatsoper, with its historical Russian connection and classical repertory of romantic/narrative ballets, provides an anchor to tradition.’
    • ‘Both of Alban Berg's operas rank as James Levine specialties, and both are in the Metropolitan's repertory this season for a few performances each.’
    • ‘Canterbury Choral Society is one of those substantial choruses in Britain that can tackle the biggest works in the repertory with absolute confidence.’
    • ‘Porgy must be one of the longest and most physically demanding roles in the repertory, and Alvy Powell meets the challenge eloquently despite occasional traces of vocal strain.’
    • ‘Slatkin has a great reputation for his performances of the British repertory.’
    • ‘After years of backsliding, the New York City Ballet has recaptured the precision that its signature Balanchine repertory demands.’
    • ‘If one looks hard, a small but viable repertory of choice American operas does exist.’
    1. 2.1 A repository or collection, especially of information.
      ‘most countries produce several periodical repertories of useful information’
      • ‘I blanch only slightly when the Wigmore Hall is referred to as a museum: after all, much of our repertory is from the 18th and 19th centuries.’
      store, storing place, storehouse, depository
      View synonyms


Mid 16th century (denoting an index or catalogue): from late Latin repertorium, from Latin repert- ‘found, discovered’, from the verb reperire. Sense 1 (arising from the fact that a company has a ‘repertory’ of pieces for performance) dates from the late 19th century.