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play someone or something up
to make someone or something seem to be more important. The director tried to play Ann up, but she was not really a star. Try to play up the good qualities of our product.
play something up
to emphasize something; to be a booster of something. The press played the scandal up so much that everyone became bored with it. They really played up the scandal.
play up somethingalso play something up
to make something more easily noticed The report plays up the benefits of the plan but doesn't say much about the costs. Instead of being defeated by her cancer treatment, she played it up, even showing off her bald head at work.
Usage notes: often something is played up in order to gain an advantage
Emphasize or publicize, as in In the press interview, the coach played up the importance of having a strong defense. [c. 1900] Also see play down; play up to.
To emphasize something or the importance of something in order to make a better impression: The newspaper played up the scandal in order to excite its readers. Your experience with computers is your strongest qualification, so be sure to play that up in the interview.