play to

play to someone or something

1. to perform something for someone or a group. The cast played to one of their classmates who was confined to the hospital. Gerald Watson will play to a small gathering of wealthy socialites this Saturday evening.
2. to aim one's performance only toward a particular person, group, or a particular taste. The comedian was playing only to the juveniles in the audience. It was clear that she was playing to the people in the cheaper seats.
See also: play
References in classic literature ?
All which evils, and many more that I say nothing of, would be removed if there were some intelligent and sensible person at the capital to examine all plays before they were acted, not only those produced in the capital itself, but all that were intended to be acted in Spain; without whose approval, seal, and signature, no local magistracy should allow any play to be acted.
He had never, at any rate, been such a little gentleman as when, after our early dinner on this dreadful day, he came round to me and asked if I shouldn't like him, for half an hour, to play to me.
Fanny, who had heard it all, and borne Edmund company in every feeling throughout the whole, now ventured to say, in her anxiety to suggest some comfort, "Perhaps they may not be able to find any play to suit them.
When coffee was over, Colonel Fitzwilliam reminded Elizabeth of having promised to play to him; and she sat down directly to the instrument.
We carried water only for ourselves, and we often mocked the young water-carriers when they were called away from play to fill the gourds.
The mingling of the public with the players was a practice which so annoyed the haughty French actor, Baron, that to suggest to the audience the absurdity of it, he would turn his back on them for a whole act, and play to the audience on the stage.
Griffin argues that the combined suppression and evolution of medieval dramatic forms contributed in the English saint play to a kind of historical drama in which "the sense of commemoration takes precedence over the sense of presence (22), analogous to the Protestant conception of the eucharist that supplanted the Catholic conception in Reformation England.
Auburn also sent copies of the play to other mathematicians, including Jean E.
The appeal starts with large and immaculate greens, which play to a comfortable average speed of just over 10 on the stimpmeter.
Heard: Does choosing your actors give you confidence in what the actor says, or in the suggestions that he or she may have in order to help mold and craft the play to its final production?
His play al-Miftah (The Key) is the only Iraqi play to be translated into English; it is included in Modern Arabic Drama: An Anthology, which appeared in 1995.
Children use this type of play to experiment with social roles, and to determine what is acceptable and what is not.
For example, with less than a minute to go before the half with the ball on the offense's end, most offensive coaches will call a draw play to see what happens.
She makes a convincing case for preferring the early quarto version of the play to the folio version for both editing and staging purposes.
I'm old enough to want each play to represent me and itself well.