or·​ches·​trate | \ ˈȯr-kə-ˌstrāt How to pronounce orchestrate (audio) \
orchestrated; orchestrating

Definition of orchestrate

transitive verb

1a : to compose or arrange (music) for an orchestra The composer orchestrated the music for the symphony orchestra.
b : to provide with orchestration orchestrate a ballet
2 : to arrange or combine so as to achieve a desired or maximum effect orchestrated preparations for the banquet a carefully orchestrated stunt

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Other Words from orchestrate

orchestrator or less commonly orchestrater \ ˈȯr-​kə-​ˌstrā-​tər How to pronounce orchestrater (audio) \ noun

Examples of orchestrate in a Sentence

He recently orchestrated a musical. She orchestrated the entire event. It's still unclear who was responsible for orchestrating the attack. A strike was orchestrated by union members.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Beatrice Trueblood orchestrated publications, from posters, to tickets, to stamps, to flyers, which traveled around the world, branding Mexico City as a design capital. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "Lessons from LA’s 1984 Summer Olympics," 17 May 2018 Republicans have charged that Senate Democrats orchestrated that leak, which then prompted Feinstein to discuss the letter and its then-anonymous accusations publicly and with the FBI. Alex Pappas, Fox News, "Republicans push to move ahead with Kavanaugh vote if accuser Christine Blasey Ford declines to testify," 19 Sep. 2018 But for all President Donald Trump cares, the committee could have announced that the Russians orchestrated the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby. Ian Bremmer, Time, "Trump and Putin Will Call Their Summit a Success. But Don't Expect U.S.-Russia Relations to Improve," 6 July 2018 Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman implied Russia had orchestrated the killing. Angela Dewan, Antonia Mortensen And Denis Lapin, CNN, "Russia, Ukraine blame each other for journalist killing," 30 May 2018 According to a recent report in the New York Times, the roll-back was orchestrated in part due to concerns over oil and gas reserves. Leah Sottile, Longreads, "Bundyville Chapter Four: The Gospel of Bundy," 18 May 2018 And the violence in this Southwest Ohio city was orchestrated by text. Keith Bierygolick, Cincinnati.com, "Football coach gunned down after terrifying bar shootout for 'payback and revenge'," 18 Apr. 2018 According to Harris, Johnson was led to believe that the protests were orchestrated by agitators and had nothing to do with the way black and brown people were being treated. Otis R. Taylor Jr., San Francisco Chronicle, "UC Berkeley panel to discuss 1968 report blaming riots on racial inequality," 26 Feb. 2018 David Rennie’s 2016 setup was orchestrated by his two adult daughters and son-in-law. Maria Carter, Country Living, "Is Winning the HGTV Dream Home Actually a Nightmare?," 16 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'orchestrate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of orchestrate

1858, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

16 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for orchestrate

The first known use of orchestrate was in 1858

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More Definitions for orchestrate



English Language Learners Definition of orchestrate

: to write or change (a piece of music) so that it can be played by an orchestra
: to organize or plan (something that is complicated)

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More from Merriam-Webster on orchestrate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with orchestrate

Spanish Central: Translation of orchestrate

Nglish: Translation of orchestrate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of orchestrate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on orchestrate

What made you want to look up orchestrate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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