Daniel Moe (1926 -2012)
Dr. Daniel Moe retired as Key Chorale’s conductor after leading the chorale since it was founded in 1985 by Ann Stephenson-Moe, organist and choirmaster at Church of the Redeemer and Don Ryno, Minister of Music at St. Boniface Church.
Daniel T. Moe was born November 2, 1926, in Minot, North Dakota. Growing up in Fargo, the Lutheran minister’s son played clarinet and saxophone and took part in his church’s choirs and his school’s band, orchestra, chorus, jazz band, and glee club.
After serving in the Naval Air Corps Moe entered Concordia College expecting to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a minister but during his time there, he turned toward music. Moe said that he chose ministry with the intention of doing “something for humanity” but later thought that by having his own chorus, working with young people and making beautiful music he would “be in heaven”.
For over fifty years, Moe did just that beginning as the University of Iowa’s director of choral music for eleven years until 1972 when he joined the staff of Oberlin College & Conservatory.
A 1991 Oberlin College Observer article about Moe’s career and retirement ended with this quote from him: “What a marvelous gift, to look back and to be able to say that what I’ve done with my life is absolutely and exactly what I wanted to do.”
Indeed we would all wish this upon looking back at our lives.