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Crossword clues for understudy

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ Couldn't go on with the performance even with the understudies because of the police coming in.
▪ Désirée was Countess Maud, and here he was in such a short time, having to use the understudy again.
▪ Drew became less punctual, he muffed his lines, and was often replaced by an understudy.
▪ For her last week, Cuka had been appearing with understudy Richard Franklin because Crawford had laryngitis.
▪ In a company without understudies, this presented a problem, but the Ailey dancers were used to last-minute adjustments.
▪ In her place was her understudy, Miss Lisa Fennell, a young dancer usually seen in the chorus.
▪ Since the understudy was off with flu, there could be no show.
▪ The role, after all, was written for the actress, considered so indispensable that she had no understudy.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Understudy \Un"der*stud`y\, v. t. & i. (Theater) To study, as another actor's part, in order to be his substitute in an emergency; to study another actor's part.


Understudy \Un"der*stud`y\, n. One who studies another's part with a view to assuming it in an emergency.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

also under-study, 1852, in the theatrical sense "memorize a part so as to be capable of performing on short notice it in the absence of the one to which it is assigned," from under + study (v.). The noun is attested from 1848, translating Italian supplimento.


n. a performer who understudies; a standby vb. 1 to study or know a role to such an extent as to be able to replace the normal performer when required 2 to act as an understudy (to someone)

  1. n. an actor able to replace a regular performer when required [syn: standby]

  2. v. be an understudy or alternate for a role [syn: alternate]

  3. [also: understudied]


In theater, an understudy, referred to in opera as cover or covering, is a performer who learns the lines and blocking or choreography of a regular actor or actress in a play. Should the regular actor or actress be unable to appear on stage because of illness, emergencies or death, the understudy takes over the part. Usually when the understudy takes over, the theater manager will make a relevant announcement prior to the start of the performance. First coined in 1874, the term understudy has more recently generally been applied only to performers who can back up a role, but still regularly perform in another role, usually a minor one.

Understudy (Smash)

"Understudy" is the tenth episode of the American television series, Smash. The episode was broadcast on April 9, 2012.

Usage examples of "understudy".

Very often had she dreamt herself into a theatre where all was confusion because the leading actress had laryngitis and the understudy was useless.

She was not even a failure, she was just another colourless understudy and nothing had happened.

Harthorne and Alan were keeping wide apart as were Joy and her understudy, Vera Scharn.

The leading lady almost kidnapped, her understudy murdered, the money man dodging sand-bags--does the show need a press agent?

This lady fiend had an understudy, a poor foundling girl, who had learned her histrionic craft in a Seventh Day Adventist Home for Orphans.

She had already been chosen page to Paris and understudy to the Nurse and to Lady Montague.

Her real task, as understudy for Juliet, was to sit down in the auditorium, unmoving, like a solemn little owl, concentrated on everything that Mrs.

Iris--for sneaking away from her observation post as understudy to both the Nurse and Lady Capulet for a smoke in the lobby, or backstage to whisper glisteningly to Zed Wintergeist.

Thursday morning, with Nathan Eldred, the stage manager, directing, there was held in the lobby the first understudy rehearsal.

Thursday morning, to the understudy rehearsal which has already been recorded, and it was no comfort to her that Iris, trained in stock, should know her understudy lines.

Between contempt for his weakness and pride in his sensitiveness and happiness in his turning to her not as the star to a baby understudy but as one trusty friend to another, she was dizzy.

Andy--the morning coat and striped trousers which he had in reserve as understudy for Capulet.

Watching the two parts of her, the sick and trembling woman and the serene actress, move deftly on together, Bethel the Understudy again savoured her own failure.

Nor had he been given the opportunity to leap from his understudy role and set the world ablaze as Hamlet.

Bunderwal, so I believe, will make an excellent understudy to Diffin the clerk.