Ben Moore, Composer
The music of American composer Ben Moore has been performed by many leading singers including soprano Deborah Voigt, mezzo-sopranos Susan Graham and Frederica von Stade, tenors Lawrence Brownlee and Robert White, baritone Nathan Gunn and five-time Tony winner Audra McDonald. His work has been called “brilliant” and “gorgeously lyrical” by the New York Times while Opera News has praised the “easy tunefulness” and “romantic sweep” of his songs.
Recordings include Voigt’s recital CD entitled All My Heart (EMI) with eight Moore songs, Nathan Gunn’s Just Before Sunrise (SonyBMG), Lawrence Brownlee’s This Heart that Flutters (Opus Arte) and Susan Graham at Carnegie Hall (Warner Classics). In April of this year Delos Productions will release Dear Theo, an album featuring three of Ben’s song cycles. These include a cycle on poems by women entitled So Free Am I (commissioned by the Marilyn Horne Foundation), a setting of John Keats’ Ode to a Nightingale, and Dear Theo which is based on the letters of Vincent van Gogh. Last year Nathan Gunn, Lawrence Brownlee and Isabel Leonard performed Ben’s music in separate concerts at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall.
In February 2015 Moore’s first opera, Enemies, a Love Story, will receive its world premiere at Palm Beach Opera directed by Sam Helfrich and starring bass baritone Daniel Okulitch. A recipient of an Opera America development grant, ‘Enemies’ is based on the novel by Isaac Bashevis Singer and is set to a libretto by Nahma Sandrow. It is at once a comedy of a man who ends up juggling three wives, and a dark story chronicling the legacy of the Holocaust.
Besides art song and opera Moore’s works include musical theatre, cabaret, chamber music, choral music and comedy material. In 2006 the Metropolitan Opera’s farewell gala for Joseph Volpe, broadcast nationally, featured two Moore songs, one for Deborah Voigt and one for Susan Graham. 2006 also saw the release of the volume Ben Moore: 14 Songs published by G. Schirmer. Reviewing the album, Classical Singer Magazine wrote: “…you can find a breath of fresh air in the settings included in this volume…This composer is not afraid of the past, but rather embraces many of the most beautiful aspects of his artistic heritage while imbuing his work with its own personal colors and tones.”
Born on January 2, 1960, in Syracuse, New York, Moore grew up in Clinton, New York and graduated from Hamilton College. With an MFA from The Parsons School of Design, Ben also pursues a career as a painter.