- an extended dramatic composition, in which all parts are sung to instrumental accompaniment, that usually includes arias, choruses, and recitatives, and that sometimes includes ballet.Compare comic opera, grand opera.
- the form or branch of musical and dramatic art represented by such compositions.
- the score or the words of such a composition.
- a performance of one: to go to the opera.
- (sometimes initial capital letter) an opera house or resident company: the Paris Opera.
noun Chiefly Music.
- a plural of opus.
noun, plural o·pus·es or especially for 1, 2, o·pe·ra [oh-per-uh, op-er-uh] /ˈoʊ pər ə, ˈɒp ər ə/.
- a musical composition.
- one of the compositions of a composer, usually numbered according to the order of publication.
- a literary work or composition, as a book: Have you read her latest opus? Abbreviation: op.
- an extended dramatic work in which music constitutes a dominating feature, either consisting of separate recitatives, arias, and choruses, or having a continuous musical structure
- the branch of music or drama represented by such works
- the score, libretto, etc, of an opera
- a theatre where opera is performed
- a plural of opus
noun plural opuses or opera (ˈɒpərə)
- an artistic composition, esp a musical work
- (often capital) (usually followed by a number) a musical composition by a particular composer, generally catalogued in order of publicationBeethoven’s opus 61 is his violin concerto
n.“a drama sung” [Klein], 1640s, from Italian opera, literally “a work, labor, composition,” from Latin opera “work, effort” (Latin plural regarded as feminine singular), secondary (abstract) noun from operari “to work,” from opus (genitive operis) “a work” (see opus). Defined in “Elson’s Music Dictionary” as, “a form of musical composition evolved shortly before 1600, by some enthusiastic Florentine amateurs who sought to bring back the Greek plays to the modern stage.” No good opera plot can be sensible. … People do not sing when they are feeling sensible. [W.H. Auden, 1961] As a branch of dramatic art, it is attested from 1759. First record of opera glass “small binoculars for use at the theater” is from 1738. Soap opera is first recorded 1939, as a disparaging reference to daytime radio dramas sponsored by soap manufacturers. n.“a work, composition,” especially a musical one, 1809, from Latin opus “a work, labor, exertion” (source of Italian opera, French oeuvre, Spanish obra), from PIE root *op- (Germanic *ob-) “to work, produce in abundance,” originally of agriculture later extended to religious acts (cf. Sanskrit apas- “work, religious act;” Avestan hvapah- “good deed;” Old High German uoben “to start work, to practice, to honor;” German üben “to exercise, practice;” Dutch oefenen, Old Norse æfa, Danish øve “to exercise, practice;” Old English æfnan “to perform, work, do,” afol “power”). The plural, seldom used as such, is opera. A musical drama that is totally or mostly sung. Aïda, Carmen, and Don Giovanni are some celebrated operas. A light, comic opera is often called an operetta.