Definition of showpiece in US English:



  • 1Something that attracts attention or admiration as an outstanding example of its type.

    ‘the factory has expanded and become a showpiece of American industry’
    • ‘He emphasises that it is not just Normandy veterans who are invited to be at the showpiece event but men and women who served in any capacity in the services during the Second World War.’
    • ‘The meeting has quickly become a speedway showpiece that also attracts big viewing figures for live coverage on TV.’
    • ‘Impressive debuts for the Bahrain and Beijing circuits, have heaped greater pressure on the British showpiece event.’
    • ‘Pride at this Highland showpiece event was tangible in the faces of directors and supporters alike before the game.’
    • ‘The showpiece event takes place the next week on 2 July at Lord's.’
    • ‘The Government was today trying to fend off a torrent of criticism following the latest bail-out for the cash-strapped showpiece attraction.’
    • ‘The director, himself, says he is giddy with excitement at the prospect of opening the showpiece event, adding that it made him ‘feel more like a teenager than an adult’.’
    • ‘The Wiltshire Buildings Record is running the course on local furniture and interior styles as its showpiece event for this year.’
    • ‘It will need swift action and monstrous retribution for it to rediscover credibility before the showpiece event of the season, in Monaco, on May 26-and the suggestion is that neither will come.’
    • ‘Before that, there are plenty of significant jumps races around the country today that will be seen as pointers to the two showpiece events at the Cheltenham Festival.’
    • ‘The figures of Lord Ganesha made of plastic in the showpiece section look attractive with its colour and design.’
    • ‘The two new prison blocks were opened this year and were intended to be a showpiece of how prisons should be.’
    • ‘John has announced his resignation after a showpiece event ran up losses of millions of dollars.’
    • ‘The custom-made instrument is the showpiece attraction at Manchester's newest music shop and has been attracting crowds.’
    • ‘An ambitious programme of events will include a showpiece £5m international arts festival, tipped to rival Edinburgh's in scope and quality.’
    • ‘The showpiece annual event is being held next month and will be shown on television around Christmas.’
    • ‘Ambitious plans to turn a South Yorkshire museum into a showpiece regional attraction are finally about to come to fruition following a £2m Lottery grant.’
    • ‘Renowned for attracting top acts to the showpiece event, this year they have excelled themselves by signing up current chart-toppers Hear'say.’
    • ‘It is hoped the overhaul will make the museum a showpiece regional attraction which will bring thousands more visitors to the area.’
    • ‘With just 12 weeks to go until the Oscars, the Los Angeles Film Critics' Association awards mark the start of the countdown to the showpiece event.’
    finest example, finest specimen, choicest example, choicest specimen, best example, best specimen, pearl, flower, pride, pride and joy, cream, crème de la crème, jewel in the crown, nonpareil, glory, wonder, prize, boast, pick
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    1. 1.1 Something that offers a particular opportunity for a display of skill.
      ‘the serenade was a showpiece for the wind section’
      • ‘Complex solo lute and keyboard works became virtuoso showpieces, culminating in the brilliant sets of variations in the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book.’
      • ‘The 8pm concert ends with a virtuoso showpiece for clarinet and piano, Weber's Grand Duo Concertante in E flat.’
      • ‘By emphasizing the bass line near strategic cadences, he transformed the usual showpiece into real music.’
      • ‘The ‘Giuoco della coppie’ is a mellow showpiece for the excellent London winds.’
      • ‘But it was a distraction when Marcelo came on to sing his showpiece aria.’
      • ‘Predictably, Wand does not treat Pictures as an orchestral or sonic showpiece, although it would wrong to say that his reading doesn't raise goose bumps of a different sort.’
      • ‘‘Song of the Flea’ is a showpiece for the basso's humor and dramatic exaggeration.’
      • ‘There are virtuoso showpieces, hilarious buffo send-ups, and elegiac romances, all enhanced by imaginative instrumental accompaniments.’
      • ‘The Bartók is a showpiece for the Concertbebouw Orchestra.’
      • ‘Famous for such musical showpieces as the Soldier's Chorus and the sparkling Jewel Song, its Romantic indulgence in magic and menace, sex and religion still have a compelling charm.’
      • ‘This year they turned to Bellini, staging Norma, generally regarded as one of the composer's finest bel canto masterpieces, and not so long ago a showpiece for Maria Callas.’
      • ‘The first National Eisteddfod, held in 1861 at Aberdare, proved to be a showpiece for literary and musical talent.’
      • ‘The slow movement is lovely (although never completely relaxed), and the finale is treated as a virtuoso showpiece.’
      • ‘The Liszt, a showpiece in any conductor's hands, but certainly one in Stokowski's hands, could be more demonic, however.’
      • ‘Helgi Tomasson's Quartette is a delightful showpiece for four ballerinas, each of whom has a lengthy solo.’
      • ‘Whether the early Strauss songs form ideal showpiece material for her voice is debatable.’
      • ‘Siegfried's Rhine Journey, which leads into Act 1, is more than an orchestral showpiece: it is an important transition between worlds.’
      • ‘Grieg's piano music can be showy, but it never is gratuitously so; while it can be a showpiece for the performer, the music usually has other priorities.’
      • ‘The Flute Concerto is a showpiece for both soloist and orchestra, elegant and atmospheric; it is full of subtle beauties that fall like gentle leaves on the ear.’
    2. 1.2 An item of work presented for exhibition or display.
      • ‘Early Victorian taste favoured opulence and eclecticism, so exhibition showpieces coexisted with simpler, compact items like Windsor chairs.’
      • ‘When male spotted bowerbirds collect sticks and other doodads to wow females, these natural interior decorators don't search for the rare showpiece, according to a new study.’
      • ‘The drawing room of Sunita's apartment near Vellayambalam is adorned with soft-toys, glass and nib paintings and embossed and engraved showpieces.’
      • ‘It's quite a showpiece in the centre and illustrates to children what nature can do.’
      • ‘Gifts, decorations, collectibles, showpieces and pieces of art from across the globe are spread out.’
      • ‘There has been nothing unsaid about interior decorative showpieces and how they have helped change a drab looking room to a glamorous live-in.’
      • ‘Articles ranging from showpieces to ornamental jewellery are exhibited.’
      • ‘Instead of being used for serving food, it seems far more likely that it formed a showpiece, displayed prominently at its owner's banquets.’
      • ‘He was just as good with informal portraits as with grand showpieces.’
      • ‘During the past 15 years, he has converted several thousands of logs into such pieces of art that become fascinating showpieces at houses or institutions.’
      • ‘He knew these to be just decorative showpieces and feared them not.’
      • ‘In the fourth and fifth round Clarke put on an exhibition showpiece and the result was unanimous in Clarke's favour.’
      • ‘On show at the festival are leather goods, clay statuettes, wooden showpieces, handloom garments, jute bags, paper articles, metal crafts and so on.’
      • ‘In contrast with the Unilever sponsored showpiece exhibit was an impromptu display by Banksy, an agit-prop and graffiti artist.’
      • ‘The showpieces, however, are large picture-frame ornaments crafted from peppermint sticks.’