JAMES D. MOYER, a native of Easton, Pennsylvania, is a veteran teacher of 37 years and is in his 25th year as Director of Choral Activities at Pennsbury High School. Mr. Moyer served as the Curriculum Coordinator of Vocal/Choral Music k-12 for the Pennsbury School District from 2002-2023. He oversees the Pennsbury High School Choral Music Department consisting of 6 choirs, nearly 300 students, and a choral staff of four persons. He has been the Producer of the annual school musical since 2010 and is proud to have several former Pennsbury students on a variety of Broadway stages. Mr. Moyer is also the Director of Music at the Presbyterian Church of Lawrenceville (NJ) since 2008, and is co-Founder and former Artistic Director of the Pennsbury Community Chorus where he led the chorus for 18 seasons from 2000-2018.
Before moving back to his native Pennsylvania in 1999, Mr. Moyer was Director of Choral Activities at Western Branch High School in Chesapeake, Virginia. He has been active as a life member in the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) as R&S chair, State President (Virginia), and has supervised multiple convention responsibilities at both the Divisional and National level for eight ACDA conventions. While in Virginia Mr. Moyer organized the first Virginia Summer Conferences and started the Virginia Middle School Honor Choir in conjunction with the VMEA All-State Chorus. He is also a contributor of choral music, book, and recording reviews to The Choral Journal.
Mr. Moyer has worked as a part-time church musician serving as both an organist and choral director since 1980. He has worked for a variety of congregations in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Oklahoma, and Virginia. Mr. Moyer has led church music reading sessions and workshops on a variety of topics including congregational singing, anthem planning, choral repertoire, organizing a fine arts series, hymnody, Welsh choral music, and conducting.
Choirs under Mr. Moyer’s direction have performed throughout the United States and across Europe, performing in such venues as the Berlin Dom, Thomaskirche, Peterskirche and the Leipzig Gewandhaus in Germany, Smetana Hall in Prague Czech Republic, St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey in London England, The Wales Millenium Center in Cardiff Wales, St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh Scotland, St. Patrick’s Cathedral and Christ Church in Dublin Ireland, St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna Austria, Notré Dame Cathedral in Paris France, at the 41st Festival dei due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy (at the direct invitation of composer Maestro Gian Carlo Menotti), and in the United States at Avery Fisher Hall and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the Washington National Cathedral, St. Patrick’s Cathedral NYC and The White House. Mr. Moyer’s choirs have performed at conferences and workshops for the Virginia Music Educators Association, Pennsylvania Music Educators Association, and the American Choral Directors Association.
Mr. Moyer’s Pennsbury High School choirs have been listed as one of two high school ‘model choirs’ in the textbook Creating Excellence in Choirs and Orchestras, GIA 2021. His Pennsbury choirs have worked with noted composers Tarik O’Regan, Paul Mealor, James Whitbourn, Thomas Lavoy, Marcus Ludwig, Meuryn Hughes and Sir Karl Jenkins.
Mr. Moyer has authored chapters (Establishing Aural Standards and Touring with Your Choir) and edited the companion compact-disc for The School Choral Program – a widely used reference/textbook published by GIA in 2008. His Pennsbury Chamber Choir is prominently featured in an aural study CD with The Choral Conductor’s Aural Tutor: Training the Ear to Diagnose Vocal Problems, GIA 2006. Specializing in choral-orchestral works for high school choirs, Moyer’s choruses have prepared major choral-orchestral repertoire including works by Handel, Mendelssohn, Bernstein, Jenkins, Whitbourn, Hughes, Graun, Orff, Gershwin, Haydn, Mozart, Kodaly, Faure, Schumann, Lauridsen, and J.S. Bach among others. Mr. Moyer is co-author with Dennis Shrock of A Conductor’s Guide to Choral/Orchestral Repertoire, GIA 2017 which has become widely used in College and University graduate choral literature classes.
Active as a guest conductor, lecturer and clinician, he has conducted choral festivals in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Mississippi, North Carolina and was guest conductor of the summer High School Vocal Institute at Westminster Choir College in 2006. In 2014 Mr. Moyer was one of the inaugural inductees into the Westminster Choir College Music Education Hall of Fame, and for several years he served on the Westminster Choir College Alumni Council. In the summer of 2015 Mr. Moyer lectured on the choral works of American composer Randall Thompson, and in particular “Frostiana” at the Unimus Music Festival in Koblenz, Germany.
Mr. Moyer studied choral conducting with Frauke Haasemann, Allen Crowell, Joseph Flummerfelt, James Jordan and Dennis Shrock.. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree in voice/organ from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey and a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from The University of Oklahoma.