A train conductor is the person who takes tickets, shouts "All aboard!" and might control the engine, while a musical conductor is the one who leads an orchestra. Same job title — not the same person.

From the Latin root conducere, meaning "bring together," a conductor does just that. A music conductor makes sure all the musicians come in at the right time and tempo, and a train conductor brings together all of the passengers. Another type of conductor is something that passes on electricity or heat, like a metal spoon, a conductor of heat when left in a pot that's simmering on the stove.

Primary Meanings of conductor

the person who leads a musical group
the person who collects fares on a public conveyance
a substance that readily conducts e.g. electricity and heat
Full Definitions of conductor

n the person who leads a musical group

director, music director
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Leonard Bernstein
United States conductor and composer (1918-1990)
Lord Britten of Aldeburgh
major English composer of the 20th century; noted for his operas (1913-1976)
Arthur Fiedler
popular United States conductor (1894-1979)
Paul Hindemith
German neoclassical composer and conductor who believed that music should have a social purpose (1895-1963)
Sergei Aleksandrovich Koussevitzky
United States conductor (born in Russia) who was noted for performing the works of contemporary composers (1874-1951)
Leonard Constant Lambert
English composer and conductor (1905-1951)
Gustav Mahler
Austrian composer and conductor (1860-1911)
Eugene Ormandy
United States conductor (born in Hungary) (1899-1985)
Seiji Ozawa
United States conductor (born in Japan in 1935)
Leopold Antoni Stanislaw Stokowski
United States conductor (born in Britain) (1882-1977)
George Szell
United States conductor (born in Hungary) (1897-1970)
Arturo Toscanini
Italian conductor of many orchestras worldwide (1867-1957)
Bruno Walter
German conductor (1876-1962)
Baron Karl Maria Friedrich Ernst von Weber
German conductor and composer of romantic operas (1786-1826)
Sir Henry Joseph Wood
English conductor (1869-1944)
Benjamin David Goodman
United States clarinetist who in 1934 formed a big band (including black as well as white musicians) and introduced a kind of jazz known as swing (1909-1986)
Woodrow Charles Herman
United States jazz musician and bandleader (1913-1987)
Alton Glenn Miller
United States bandleader of a popular big band (1909-1944)
Arthur Jacob Arshawsky
United States clarinetist and leader of a swing band (1910-2004)
John Philip Sousa
a United States bandmaster and composer of military marches (1854-1932)
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the leader of a dance band
the conductor of a band
drum major
the leader of a marching band or drum corps
drum majorette, majorette
a female drum major
Type of:
artist who composes or conducts music as a profession

n the person who collects fares on a public conveyance

a woman conductor
Type of:
accumulator, collector, gatherer
a person who is employed to collect payments (as for rent or taxes)

n a substance that readily conducts e.g. electricity and heat

dielectric, insulator, nonconductor
a material such as glass or porcelain with negligible electrical or thermal conductivity
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Cu, atomic number 29, copper
a ductile malleable reddish-brown corrosion-resistant diamagnetic metallic element; occurs in various minerals but is the only metal that occurs abundantly in large masses; used as an electrical and thermal conductor
Ag, atomic number 47, silver
a soft white precious univalent metallic element having the highest electrical and thermal conductivity of any metal; occurs in argentite and in free form; used in coins and jewelry and tableware and photography
semiconducting material, semiconductor
a substance as germanium or silicon whose electrical conductivity is intermediate between that of a metal and an insulator; its conductivity increases with temperature and in the presence of impurities
Ge, atomic number 32, germanium
a brittle grey crystalline element that is a semiconducting metalloid (resembling silicon) used in transistors; occurs in germanite and argyrodite
Si, atomic number 14, silicon
a tetravalent nonmetallic element; next to oxygen it is the most abundant element in the earth's crust; occurs in clay and feldspar and granite and quartz and sand; used as a semiconductor in transistors
blister copper
an impure form of copper having a black blistered surface
coin silver
a silver of the degree of purity established for making legal silver coins
Type of:
material, stuff
the tangible substance that goes into the makeup of a physical object

n a device designed to transmit electricity, heat, etc.

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bus, busbar
an electrical conductor that makes a common connection between several circuits
cable, line, transmission line
a conductor for transmitting electrical or optical signals or electric power
cord, electric cord
a light insulated conductor for household use
a conductor used to make electrical contact with some part of a circuit
heat sink
a metal conductor specially designed to conduct (and radiate) heat
lightning conductor, lightning rod
a metallic conductor that is attached to a high point and leads to the ground; protects the building from destruction by lightning
semiconductor, semiconductor device, semiconductor unit
a conductor made with semiconducting material
bypass, electrical shunt, shunt
a conductor having low resistance in parallel with another device to divert a fraction of the current
wave guide, waveguide
a hollow metal conductor that provides a path to guide microwaves; used in radar
conducting wire, wire
a metal conductor that carries electricity over a distance
a positively charged electrode by which electrons leave an electrical device
(electronics) the part of a transistor that separates the emitter from the collector
a negatively charged electrode that is the source of electrons entering an electrical device
chip, micro chip, microchip, microprocessor chip, silicon chip
electronic equipment consisting of a small crystal of a silicon semiconductor fabricated to carry out a number of electronic functions in an integrated circuit
coax, coax cable, coaxial cable
a transmission line for high-frequency signals
the electrode in a transistor through which a primary flow of carriers leaves the region between the electrodes
crystal rectifier, diode, junction rectifier, semiconductor diode
a semiconductor that consists of a p-n junction
electrical cable
a cable that provides an electrical connection for telephone or television or power stations
electron gun
the electrode that is the source of electrons in a cathode-ray tube or electron microscope; consists of a cathode that emits a stream of electrons and the electrostatic or electromagnetic apparatus that focuses it
the electrode in a transistor where electrons originate
extension cord
an electric cord used to extend the length of a power cord
fiber optic cable, fibre optic cable
a cable made of optical fibers that can transmit large amounts of information at the speed of light
a thin wire (usually tungsten) that is heated white hot by the passage of an electric current
control grid, grid
an electrode placed between the cathode and anode of a vacuum tube to control the flow of electrons through the tube
booster cable, jumper cable, jumper lead, lead
a jumper that consists of a short piece of wire
wire connecting an antenna to a receiver or a transmitter to a transmission line
n-type semiconductor
a semiconductor in which electrical conduction is due chiefly to the movement of electrons
a length of wire that has a plug at each end; used to make connections at a patchboard
power cord
a cord to conduct power to an electrical appliance
power cable, power line
cable used to distribute electricity
printer cable
a cable between a computer and a printer
p-type semiconductor
a semiconductor in which electrical conduction is due chiefly to the movement of positive holes
telegraph line, telegraph wire, telephone line, telephone wire
the wire that carries telegraph and telephone signals
thermal resistor, thermistor
a semiconductor device made of materials whose resistance varies as a function of temperature; can be used to compensate for temperature variation in other components of a circuit
electronic transistor, junction transistor, transistor
a semiconductor device capable of amplification
Type of:
an instrumentality invented for a particular purpose

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