watching from the wings


Senior Member
Japanese - Japan

I want to know the meaning of "watching from the wings" in below phrase in The Economist.

This makes it a good place to try such an experiment. Success would encourage other island grids, both real (Australia’s and Ireland’s, for example) and metaphorical (such as Texas’s, which has few links with the rest of North America) to try. Larger grids in North America and Europe will no doubt be watching from the wings.

Link is here.
<Green power needs more than just solar panels and wind turbines>

Hope some kind person will kindly explain to me by using some para-phrase explanation.

  • Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    This is a metaphor.

    When one actor is on stage, another may be able to watch him from the wings - the unseen space at the side of the stage. The second actor is not performing yet, but probably waiting for the moment when he will enter and play his part. Here is a picture of a ballerina literally waiting in the wings for her moment to perform.



    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    The operators of those big electricity grids are not directly involved but they are watching what happens to see what they might learn from observation.


    Senior Member
    Japanese - Japan
    Hi guys

    I just thought "the wing" means the bird wing........
    I got it.

    Thanks for your input !