Definition of drama in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈdrɑːmə/


1A play for theatre, radio, or television: a gritty urban drama about growing up in Harlem
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  • Snippets of music, radio dramas and newsreels play in the background and laundry hangs over the audience.
  • Television dramas were usually adaptations of stage plays, and invariably about upper classes.
  • In addition to her contribution to music, she acted in a number of television dramas and feature films.
play, show, piece, theatrical work, spectacle, dramatization;
1.1 [mass noun] Plays as a genre or style of literature: Renaissance drama
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  • The movies scheduled to be shown come from many genres including drama, comedy and thrillers.
  • Bringing modern styles to Chinese drama, they are cultivating their own fans.
  • There were a range of optional subjects like Australian and American literature and drama.
1.2 [mass noun] The activity of acting: teachers who use drama are working in partnership with pupils [as modifier]: drama school
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  • The money will go towards the school's planned amphitheatre and other drama activities.
  • For a number of years now, he has worked with young carers in the area offering drama workshops and activities.
  • He said the ground floor would have a sliding door to make separate areas for activities such as drama productions.
acting, the theatre, the stage, the performing arts, dramatic art, dramatics, dramaturgy, stagecraft, theatricals, theatrics, the thespian art, show business;
performing, performance, playing a role, appearing on stage
informal the boards, treading the boards, show biz
rare thespianism, histrionics
2An exciting, emotional, or unexpected event or circumstance: a hostage drama [mass noun]: an afternoon of high drama at Wembley
More example sentences
  • The drama of that event is so perfectly evoked you can feel the fear in the room and hear bones crunch as the executioner's axe strikes home.
  • The drama of the event had the staffers buzzing but drew shrugs from the children.
  • Intimate cinematography and the drama of events unfolding makes for intense, absorbing viewing.


make a drama out of

informal Exaggerate the importance of (a minor problem or incident): Gwyneth makes such a drama out of things
More example sentences
  • What's the point in making a drama out of nothing?
  • The Police inspector doesn't make a drama out of a crisis - despite having had more than his fair share during a distinguished career.
  • That way, when the car breaks down, the washing machine floods the kitchen floor or the telly goes ping you don't need to make a drama out of a crisis.
incident, scene, spectacle, crisis;
excitement, thrill, sensation, adventure, affair, business, occasion, circumstance;
disturbance, row, commotion, turmoil, fracas;
dramatics, theatrics, histrionics


Early 16th century: via late Latin from Greek drama, from dran 'do, act'.

  • This came via late Latin from Greek drama, from dran ‘do, act’ source also of drastic (late 17th century). The Latin dramatis personae has been used since the mid 18th century for a list of the characters in a play.

Words that rhyme with drama

amah, armour (US armor), Atacama, Brahma, Bramah, charmer, cyclorama, dharma, diorama, disarmer, embalmer, farmer, Kama, karma, lama, llama, Matsuyama, panorama, Parma, pranayama, Rama, Samar, Surinamer, Vasco da Gama, Yama, Yokohama

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