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a variation on the theme of (something)

A different or unique way of doing, saying, or presenting something that has been done in the past. The new restaurant offers a variation on the theme of the roadside diner, giving patrons haute-cuisine interpretations of greasy spoon staples. When asked why, his answer was a variation on the them of "bigger is better." The anthology series presents variations on the themes of classic genre tropes, such as westerns, Gothic thrillers, rom-coms, and even old cheesy B movies.
See also: of, on, theme, variation

variations on the theme of something

different ways of doing or saying the same thing: Her new book of short stories offers variations on the theme of man’s desire to succeed.
See also: of, on, something, theme, variation
References in periodicals archive ?
But when we look at the genetics, because of the tremendous variation in all groups, and especially in the group called 'black,' it's not uncommon at all to find two blacks who could be very different from each other.
Machine Direction (MD) Instability -- A fine paper machine had MD instability that showed up in MD tensile strength orientation (TSO) strips as frequency and fiber angle variation.
In this article, we describe a case in which an unusual anatomic variation of the infraorbital nerve was observed.
You can use a different variation every day to maintain the players' interest.
Many times the Six Sigma process requires identification of assignable causes of variation for a robber mixing process.
Because Americans tend to look down on certain language variations--such as African-American Vernacular English or Appalachian English--the analysis of language variation and its accompanying practices are met with controversy.
Wherever LeWitt's large variations appeared, they acted as powerful barometers of a room's architectural atmosphere, while revealing unexpected qualities of their own.
As Wennberg (5) and others have shown during the last few decades, there has been wide variation in how structures and processes of the health care system have been used to produce outputs.
Several compositions have such descriptions as menuetto con sua divisione; sua (`its') seems to imply that the variation is an expected addition.
These movements in coefficients are a significant source of the total variation of important economic aggregates.
Curtis-Smith's mysterious "Rube Goldberg Variation," Mischa Zupko's imaginative and well-pedaled "Ghost Variation," David Del Tredici's beautiful and romantic Satie-like "My Goldberg" (Gymnopedie #1), Fred Lerdahl's exciting pointilistic and toccata-like "Chasing Goldberg," Lukas Foss's well-crafted and quartal-style "Goldmore Variation: or Ralf Gothoni's improvisatory "Variation of Variation with Variation.
Kirk Peterson, American Ballet Theatre ballet master and Don Q coach, says, "I like to put the architecture (the steps) down first, and then we talk about how to use the fan--where to use epaulement, the flirtatious nature of the variation, and using the fan as an expression of the character.
When the backpressure valve was tightened on the line experiencing edge weave, thermal images from the IR scanner showed nearly 18[degrees] F temperature variation in an "M"-shaped profile, and the edge where the weave problem occurred was 10[degrees] hotter than the center of the curtain.
Edwards Deming, the father of Total Quality Management, realized that the key to quality is control of variation.