Definition of executant in US English:



  • 1A person who carries something into effect.

    ‘executants of the publisher's will’
    • ‘The king's repeated affirmations of his dependence upon Buckingham meant that he was blamed for unpopular policies such as the ‘Spanish match’ of which he was merely the executant.’
    practitioner, performer, player
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    1. 1.1 A person who performs music or makes a work of art or craft.
      • ‘The guitar - at least if the player picks, rather than strums - always struck me as temperamental an instrument as the French horn, even under the hands of a decent executant.’
      • ‘In the attempt to humanize music, that attempt which almost every executant makes, knowing that he will be judged by his success or failure in it, what is most fatally lost is that sense of mystery which, to music, is atmosphere.’
      • ‘Still, as executant and chief player on the credits, Scorsese must take the chief responsibility.’
      • ‘A half-hour of music entirely free of cliché and determined to create its own set of conventions makes things tough on executant and listener.’
      • ‘The greatest Sienese painters were among their executants, including Duccio (lost commissions between 1279 and 1295) and Ambrogio Lorenzetti.’
      • ‘When Pachmann plays Chopin the music sings itself, as if without the intervention of an executant, of one who stands between the music and our hearing.’
      • ‘For these reasons and many others, some persons think that ancient works should be performed, not in view of an immediate and complete artistic success, but in order to train executants, the public and composers.’
      • ‘Its four movements provide plenty of scope for executants.’
      • ‘The topics of these lectures included English composers, English executants, and critics.’
      entertainer, performer, trouper, showman, artist
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  • Relating to the performance of music or the making of works of art or craft.

    ‘music is both an art and an executant skill’
    • ‘I can best describe this book as a series of masterclasses at which we are, mercifully, not required to put our executant talents under scrutiny.’


Mid 19th century: from French exécutant ‘carrying out’, present participle of exécuter (see execute).