Douglas Moore (1893-1969) is best known as the composer of The Ballad of Baby Doe, one of the few American operas to enter the operatic repertory. He also composed songs, chamber and orchestral music, and six other operas, including The Devil and Daniel Webster. Early in his career he turned to American subjects for inspiration. At a time when many composers were writing ever more adventurous music, he steadfastly continued writing tonal music in traditional forms. His influence was felt far beyond his work as a composer through his work as an educator and administrator. He was a significant advocate for American composers and musicians, especially during the 1930s and 1940s, when American composers were not held in high regard, and he initiated the recording company, Composer’s Recordings, Inc. to make music of important American composers widely available regardless of the music’s commercial viability. He was professor of composition and head of the music department at Columbia University for over thirty-five years and President of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His leadership in founding the Columbia Opera Workshop established a model for college and university workshops throughout the country when there were few professional opera companies in the United States and almost no opera training opportunities for musicians and composers in America.
This book documents all of Moore’s published, unpublished, and recorded compositions along with an exhaustive listing of performances. The annotated bibliography of over 3000 entries includes descriptions of books, dissertations, articles, and reviews both by and about Moore and brings to light a fascinating creative personality in the history and development of American music.