American English

Definition of show noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable] a theater performance, especially one that includes singing and dancing to go to a show a one-woman/-man show to put on/stage a show She's the star of the show! see also floor show, road show
  2. 2[countable] a program on television or the radio to host a show a TV/radio show a quiz show collocations at Topic CollocationsTelevisionwatching watch television/TV/a show/a program/a documentary/a pilot/a rerun/a repeat see an ad/a commercial/the news/the weather catch/miss a show/a program/an episode/the news pick up/reach for/grab/lose the remote (control) change channels surf (through)/flip through the channels sit in front of/turn on/turn off the television/the TV/the TV set have/install satellite (TV)/cable (TV)/a satellite dishshowing show a program/a documentary/an ad/a commercial/a prime-time sitcom/drama run an ad/a commercial/a movie broadcast/air/repeat a show/a program/a documentary/an episode/a series go out/air/be recorded live attract/draw (in)/pull (in) viewers be a hit with viewers/audiences/critics get (low/high) ratingsappearing be on/appear on television/TV/a TV show take part in a call-in/a game show/a quiz show/a reality TV show host a show/a program/a series/a game show/a quiz show/a (late-night/daytime) talk show be/become/work as a talk-show host/sports commentator/news anchor present the news appear/perform live (on TV)program-making do/film/make a show/a program/a documentary/an episode/a pilot/a series/an ad/a commercial work on a soap (opera)/a pilot (episode)/a sitcom write/produce a drama/sitcom/spin-off/comedy seriesgame show, road show, talk show
  3. of collection of things
  4. 3[countable, uncountable] an occasion when a collection of things are brought together for people to look at an agricultural show The latest computers will be on show at the exhibition. A local artist is holding a show of her recent work. see also fashion show, fashion show, peep show
  5. of feeling
  6. 4[countable] an action or a way of behaving that shows how you feel synonym display a show of emotion a show of support a show of force/strength by the army.
  7. insincere act
  8. 5[uncountable, singular] something that is done only to give a good impression, but is not sincere He may seem charming, but it's all show! She pretends to be interested in opera, but it's only for show. He made a great show of affection, but I knew he didn't mean it.
  9. colorful sight
  10. 6[countable, uncountable] a brightly colored or pleasing sight synonym display a lovely show of spring flowers
  11. event/situation
  12. 7[singular] (informal) an event, a business, or a situation where something is being done or organized She runs the whole show. I won't interfere—it's your show.
  13. good show
  14. 8[countable, usually singular] (informal) something that is done in a particular way The team put on a good show in the competition.
  15. Idioms
    a dog and pony show (informal) (disapproving)
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    an event that is planned only in order to impress people so that they will support or buy something the dog and pony show of his visits to the war zone a dog and pony show to sell the idea to investors
    intended to be seen but not used These items are just for show—they're not for sale.
    get the show on the road (informal)
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    to start an activity or a journey Let's get this show on the road!
    a show of hands
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    a group of people each raising a hand to vote for or against something The vote was passed by a show of hands. Let's have a show of hands. Who's in favor of the proposal?
    steal the show [no passive]
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    to attract more attention and praise than other people in a particular situation As always, the children stole the show. British and Australian actors stole the show at this year's awards.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: show