Douglas Moore was born in Long Island, New York in 1893 and died in Greenport, New York in 1969. He graduated from Yale University, where he studied with Horatio Parker (the same teacher of Charles Ives). He also studied with Ernest Bloch in Cleveland. He began composing music in 1922 and one of his first compositions, "Four Museum Pieces", won him a Pulitzer Travelling Fellowship in 1926.
He joined Columbia University's Department of Music in 1926 and became full Professor in 1940. He became Executive Officer of the department at the same time. Moore was elected President of the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1946.
His work has been influenced by his literary friends, among them Archibald Macleish, Steven Vincent Benet and Vachel Lindsay. Through his friendship with Lindsay the young composer gained a new insight into the life of his country and into the richness and variety of the Amercian scene, and as a result, his compositions reveal a man who has expressed his American heritage and his own ideals within the universal frame of the muscial tradition.
Dr. Moore's first work on a typically American scene was "The Pageant of P.T.Barnum". In addition, he has composed two symphonies and is composer of numerous chamber music works. His most famous operas are: "White Wings", The Headless Horseman", "The Devil and Daniel Webster", "Giants in the Earth" which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 1951; and "Carry Nation".