vaudeville[vôd′vil, väd′-; vô′də-, vä′də-]
- a stage show consisting of mixed specialty acts, including songs, dances, comic skits, acrobatic performances, etc.
- this branch of entertainment generally
- Now Rare a comic theatrical piece interspersed with songs and dances
- Obsolete a satirical or topical song, often with pantomime
Origin: Fr, earlier vau-de-vire, after Vau-de-Vire, the valley of the Vire (in Normandy), famous for light, convivial songs
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
- a. Stage entertainment offering a variety of short acts such as slapstick turns, song-and-dance routines, and juggling performances.b. A theatrical performance of this kind; a variety show.
- A light comic play that often includes songs, pantomime, and dances.
- A popular, often satirical song.
Origin: French, alteration of Old French vaudevire, occasional or topical light popular song, possibly short for chanson du Vau de Vire, song of Vau de Vire, a valley of northwest France, or perhaps dialectal vauder, to go + virer, to turn; see veer1.
vaudeville - Cultural Definition
Light theatrical entertainment, popular in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, consisting of a succession of short acts. A vaudeville show usually included comedians, singers, dancers, jugglers, trained animals, magicians, and the like.