Music program loses friend with the passing of Dr. Gerald Moore
Dr. Gerald Moore, who impacted the lives of generations of music students at Lipscomb University, died suddenly Thursday morning, Feb. 11, as a result of an apparent heart attack.
Known for his quiet and gentle demeanor as well as his gift for arranging music, Dr. Moore joined the Lipscomb music faculty in Sept. 1970. In 1977, he left Lipscomb for a music teaching position at Dallas Christian School. He returned to Lipscomb’s music department in 1981, where he remained until his retirement in May 2006. During his tenure, Dr. Moore directed the Early Music Consort, the Jazz Vocal Ensemble and the Chorale. He also taught music theory and related courses.
Dr. Moore continued as an adjunct professor in music until the time of his death. He was also music director of the Nashville Early Music Ensemble and the assistant conductor of the Nashville Double Reed Ensemble.
“He was a brilliant music theorist. When I was working on a new piece, I sometimes composed myself into a musical corner. I could always call on Gerald and he knew exactly what to tell me to do to get back on track,” said Jerome Reed, professor of music at Lipscomb.
“He was always calm, gentle and deliberate. He was one of the funniest people I've known. We all looked forward to faculty meetings because Dr. Moore would make dry comments that would keep us all laughing. For 27 years he was a professional and spiritual mentor. The gentle and caring way he dealt with those around him will always be an inspiration to me.”
Dr. Moore was a regular presence in the music department even after retiring from a full-time teaching load.
“It is very difficult to put into a few words the impact that Dr. Moore had on our department. Even though he was ‘retired,’ his regimen was to come to his office every day,” said Marcia Hughes, professor of music at Lipscomb. “He was a gentle giant in many ways. I never saw him in the 35 years that I have known him ever to lose his cool. He was calm in times of turmoil. He was a good listener and one knew that you had his full attention when you came to talk with him.”
Former music department chair Jim Jackson, shared a friendship with Dr. Moore that lasted more than 50 years.
“I met Gerald when we were both teachers in Garland, Texas in 1960. My wife, Pat, and I got acquainted with him then and have been the closest of friends ever since. We have been together for many years. Every Friday night since he returned to Lipscomb in 1981 we have had a standing date once a week with Dr. Moore and his wife, Barbara,” said Jackson, retired longtime Lipscomb music professor and department chair.
“We’ve been through a lot together. He has been a true friend and such a Christian gentleman. We have complemented each other in our work. I was always quite content to be the front man and he was content to be the brains behind the scenes.”
Dr. Moore was passionate about music theory and about his work with Lipscomb’s Early Music Consort.
“Gerald was meticulous in his work for the Early Music Consort. He planned months, sometimes even a year, in advance for his programs. He searched for new literature and made arrangements of the early music. The concerts were very well attended not only by alumni but by the community at large. Many times there was standing room only at his EMC concerts,” Hughes reflected.
Dr. Moore received a special award from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers for his arrangements for a variety of ensembles. He also received the Baker Award from Lipscomb University for excellence in teaching. In the summer of 1998 he received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to travel to Brandeis University for an intensive workshop in the analysis of medieval and Renaissance music. In 2001-2002 he received a sabbatical in order to focus on acquiring and arranging new music for the Early Music Consort. Dr. Moore served as a regular instructor in early music for several workshops, including the Mountain Collegium, a summer early music workshop held on the campus of Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina. He has also published arrangements of church music and music for early instruments; his hymn arrangements appear in the hymnal Praise for the Lord.
Moore is survived by his wife, Barbara; sons, Scott (Sherry,) and Brent (MariLynn, who works in Campus Safety and Security); and grandchildren Devon and Austin.
Funeral services were conducted Sunday, Feb. 14. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made to the Dr. Gerald Moore Music Scholarship Fund which they are establishing here at Lipscomb.