Definition of ensemble in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɒnˈsɒmb(ə)l/


1A group of musicians, actors, or dancers who perform together: a Bulgarian folk ensemble
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  • One of his strengths as a director here is that he has brought together an ensemble of great actors and his camera is not shy about letting their faces tell the story.
  • More than 25 bands and ensembles will perform more than 40 concerts on Saturday for the Pershore Midsummer Brass event.
  • The correlation works magnificently, as does the large ensemble of young actors, musicians and technicians from all over Western Canada.
group, band, orchestra, combo;
company, troupe, cast, chorus, corps, circle, association;
duo, trio, quartet, quintet, sextet, septet, octet, nonet
1.1A piece of music or passage written for performance by a whole cast, choir, or group of instruments: Cherubini’s numbers, with solos and ensembles intermingled, have a freedom and originality
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  • The programme for the evening will include arias, duets and ensembles from operas by Mozart, Puccini, Verdi, Donizetti and Gounod
  • This piece d' occasion is said to have been intended for a wedding that never took place and features four soloists and choir in a series of delightful solos, ensembles and choruses.
  • The work is full of exciting ensembles, arias and orchestral passages with all performers especially the great Aquiles Machado churning out a performance that is well nigh unsurpassable.
1.2 [mass noun] The coordination between performers executing an ensemble passage: a high level of tuning and ensemble is guaranteed
More example sentences
  • The ensemble was also superbly coordinated in the Minuet and Trio and bristling finale, with its driving sequences and rich chains of suspensions.
  • Jenkins ability to wield these performers into ensemble and groupings at moments touched the sublime.
  • The soloist and orchestra achieve wonderful clarity and fine ensemble.
2A group of items viewed as a whole rather than individually: the buildings in the square present a charming provincial ensemble
More example sentences
  • When the curtains rose, a full ensemble would be in view with this building at the centre sitting majestically.
  • The site and its structures were eventually acquired by the city council with a view to renovating the ensemble to house a municipal library and archive.
  • London Cries, depicting the lower orders of the capital, survive in three formats: as broadsheet panels of engravings, as ensembles of individual prints, and as illustrated books.
whole, whole thing, entity, unit, unity, body, piece, object, discrete item;
collection, set, combination, package, accumulation, conglomeration, sum, total, totality, entirety, assemblage, aggregate, composite
informal whole caboodle
2.1 [usually in singular] A set of clothes chosen to harmonize when worn together: her elegant pink and black ensemble put most outfits in the shade
More example sentences
  • The boots began the ensemble, black leather with silver studs outlining them in a tasteful fashion.
  • I chose the powder grey shirt, light shade of grey tie, pin stripe jacket and pants and to pull the ensemble together some black boots.
  • A white shirt and black vest finished the ensemble.
outfit, costume, suit, coordinates, matching separates, set of clothes
informal get-up, rig-out
2.2chiefly Physics A group of similar systems, or different states of the same system, often considered statistically: we would have to adopt a picture in which there is an ensemble of all possible universes with some probability distribution
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  • However, it is probably a wise idea to simulate the same system at different surface areas and using different ensembles.
  • The interior treatments of the two ensembles reflect the difference in their functions.
  • When dissolved in water, most proteins fold into either a single conformation or a small ensemble of similar conformations.


Late Middle English (as an adverb (long rare) meaning 'at the same time'): from French, based on Latin insimul, from in- 'in' + simul 'at the same time'. The noun dates from the mid 18th century.

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