Results 1 to 3 of 3

    • Join Date: Sep 2006
    • Posts: 20
    #1

    Question playing to the gallery

    Hi,

    I just wanted to know what these expressions mean:

    Playing to the gallery
    and
    Tea leaf reading

    Pleas elaborate with some e.g.s

    Regards,
    Amit

  1. BobK's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 16,038
    #2

    Re: playing to the gallery

    Quote Originally Posted by amit sharma View Post
    Hi,

    I just wanted to know what these expressions mean:

    Playing to the gallery: Putting on a show [possibly distracting public attention from the main focus]
    and
    Tea leaf reading Predicting the future on the basis of the tea leaves left in a cup (but not one made with a tea-bag!)

    Pleas elaborate with some e.g.s

    Regards,
    Amit
    Note: 'The gallery' refers to the cheaper seats at the top/back of a theatre. The gallery was informally referred to as 'the gods': 'I went to the Royal Opera House once, but I was right up in the gods and the seat still cost 50.00'.

    Examples:

    I know I wasn't supposed to be the centre of attention in that scene, but I was playing to the gallery because there were some friends of mine in the audience.

    The Village Show had the usual attractions, a band-stand and a display of locally-grown produce. A special guest was Madame Petulengra, who was telling fortunes by reading tea leaves.


    b
    PS I don't know if 'playing to the gallery' is used in American English. Often a British English idiom is replaced in Am E by a version based on more modern culture/technology. There is the term 'grandstanding', which means much the same as 'playing to the gallery', but doesn't refer to Edwardian theatre architecture!

  2. Ouisch's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2006
    • Posts: 4,142
    #3

    Re: playing to the gallery

    "Playing to the gallery" in AmE when referring to an actor usually indicates that he is overacting or showing off; his speech and gestures are broad enough that they can be seen by the folks in the upper seats.

    When a politician "plays to the gallery" it means that he is purposely saying and promising things that ring true to the "common folk," or those who could only afford the cheap (gallery) seats.

    And then we have the "peanut gallery," a term which was coined during the days of vaudeville when the folks up in the cheap seats often expressed their displeasure with the act on stage by tossing their snacks (usually roasted peanuts) at them. So today when we don't want to hear criticism about something, we often say "And no remarks from the peanut gallery, please."

Similar Threads

  1. playing going to play
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-Sep-2007, 11:13
  2. playing at house
    By Romel Panzer in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-Jun-2007, 22:37
  3. Wasted playing video games all night long? no?
    By HaraKiriBlade in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 09-Aug-2005, 18:16
  4. Playing to our stength
    By humblehkguy in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 07-Aug-2005, 20:05
  5. Peanut gallery
    By Francois in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 01-Dec-2004, 23:43

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •