Also, one-man band. A person who does or manages just about everything, as in This department is a one-man show—the chairman runs it all, or John conducts the interviews, writes the articles, solicits ads, deals with the printer—he's a one-man band. This idiom alludes to the actor or artist responsible for the entire performance or exhibit, or the musician who plays every instrument in the group. [First half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
How to use one-man show in a sentence
As a cultural corrective, Hayes is currently touring in a one-man show titled Riding the Midnight Express with Billy Hayes.The Unbelievable (True) Story of the World’s Most Infamous Hash Smuggler | Marlow Stern | November 14, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
He opens up about the bogus Midnight Express, Oliver Stone on blow, and his riveting one-man show.The Unbelievable (True) Story of the World’s Most Infamous Hash Smuggler | Marlow Stern | November 14, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
He next takes his one-man show to Dubai, followed by some dates in Europe.Mike Tyson Opens Up About His Rape Conviction, Brad Pitt, and Love of Pinkberry | Marlow Stern | November 6, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
Unfortunately for Afghanistan, the country and the electoral process are both largely a one-man show.
He had once put on a one-man show where he sang songs from 100 years of Broadway musicals.Monsignor Meth Kevin Wallin: The Kinky Priest Who Sold Meth | Michael Daly | January 22, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
I shall have a one-man-show next season; and then there will be no more money troubles.The Doctor's Dilemma | George Bernard Shaw
Of course I shall sell them next year fast enough, after my one-man-show; but while the grass grows the steed starves.The Doctor's Dilemma | George Bernard Shaw
A miserable Gallery had refused to let that straight-haired genius have his one-man show after all.The Forsyte Saga, Complete | John Galsworthy
To meet him you might almost think that Military Aeronautics was a one-man show.
They advised me to have a one-man show, late in the winter, so as to get publicity.The Nest Builder | Beatrice Forbes-Robertson Hale