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command performance

a performance of a play, opera, ballet, or the like, given at the request of a sovereign or head of state.
Origin of command performance
First recorded in 1895-1900 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for command performance
Historical Examples
  • Not long ago, it will be remembered, she played Lady Teazle at a command performance of Sheridan's masterpiece.

    Christopher Quarles Percy James Brebner
  • Whatever might be said about Arnold's political ethics, few have criticized his command performance with small forces.

    The Road to Independence: Virginia 1763-1783 Virginia State Dept. of Education
British Dictionary definitions for command performance

command performance

a performance of a play, opera, etc, at the request of a ruler or of royalty
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Contemporary definitions for command performance

a social occasion one is required to attend's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
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Idioms and Phrases with command performance

command performance

An occasion that one is obliged to attend, as in My boss's invitations to dinner are always a command performance. This term originally (late 1800s) denoted a theatrical or musical performance presented at the behest of a sovereign or head of state. By the 1930s it was also used figuratively for any more or less obligatory occasion or performance.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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