stage whisper

noun
1.
a loud whisper on a stage, meant to be heard by the audience.
2.
any whisper loud enough to be overheard.

Origin:
1860–65

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
stage whisper
 
n
1.  a loud whisper from one actor to another onstage intended to be heard by the audience
2.  any loud whisper that is intended to be overheard

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

stage whisper

A whisper loud enough to be overheard, as in Our three-year-old behaved beautifully at the ceremony, but then he asked in a stage whisper, "Why does that lady have blue hair?" This expression alludes to an actor's whisper on stage, which is meant to be heard by the audience. [Mid-1800s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
His acting is understated, frequently reverting to little more than a stage whisper for the intimacy of the television cameras.
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