Anderson's Arizona Originals
Born in Milwaukee in 1944, Eugene Anderson graduated with honors from Brookfield Central High
School, winning three summer music-camp scholarships before going on to the University of
Wisconsin, Madison, where he earned his Bachelor of Music Education degree in 1968. At UW he
Studied orchestration with James Christensen who later became Director of Music at Disneyland.
He also arranged some of America's first tuba quartets for use on the annual UW Concert Band
tour each January at the request of Professor Raymond Dvorak. After graduation as the winner of
the Faulhaber Award, given to the senior most likely to succeed in music, Mr. Anderson accepted
his first teaching position at the University of Toledo as a member of the Toledo Brass Quintet,
besides teaching duties. He also performed with the Toledo Symphony, Toledo Opera Orchestra
and the Toledo Symphony Brass Quintet. While in Ohio he studied with famed tubist Arnold
Jacobs of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra for 44 years. He composed and dedicated his
Tuba Concerto No.1 in Bm to him as a thank you. (See REVIEWS section for more information.)
Mr. Anderson then was accepted on a teaching fellowship at Arizona State University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude with his Masters of Music in composition. During this period he wrote ' The Perception of War' symphonic tone poem and his 'Symphony No. 1' for full orchestra as well as more small brass ensemble pieces and a ’Nocturne for Flute and Piano'. He studied 20th Century harmony with Dr. Grant Fletcher and Professor Ronald LoPresti. His next position was as band director for Apache Junction High School where the band went from ten to eighty members in four years, culminating in winning a national award for arranging the Libby's Theme song for marching band, winning a $500 dollar prize. Next was an attempt at winning the coveted Nunamaker Award from the University of Arizona, Tucson at their annual statewide band - day marching competition, which they did for Best Marching Band Show. With his show featuring two more of his original arrangements.
At the high school his acting credits included a role in The Music Man, Cabaret and The King and I. He also acted in the lead role of Christ in the Last Supper Drama for five years. To date, Mr. Anderson has over 150 compositions and arrangements for brass ensembles, solos, band, orchestra, choral music, including gospel quartets, hand bell choir, teaching aids, method books and music for the theater (see THE WAGER and reviews). He composed two commissioned works that were recorded on his first commercial CD from d’Note records of California and sold worldwide, that included Mr. Jacobs tuba concerto and 'The Perception of War’ of which virtuoso Sam Pilafian was the featured soloist on three of the works.
The album PERCEPTION was entered in the 1998 Grammy Awards in 4 classical categories ( see CD’s and REVIEWS section). The CD is now only available from AAO Music, since Mr. Anderson decided to distribute the remaining d’Note copies, many of which are autographed by Sam and the composer (a rare collectible; see CD’s section). Mr. Jacobs was so impressed with the concerto that he signed the one and only endorsement letter he would ever produce in his life and before passing away three months later (see REVIEWS section).
Cimarron Music Press has now published the concerto with piano reduction and has the full score (written with the CSO in mind) and parts available for sale. Reviewer, composer, Barton Cummings in his 1991 review wrote "for this reviewer will state in the strongest terms available, that Concerto No.1 in Bm) is a masterwork of the first order and that it deserves to become known, performed and recorded then engraved and published" (see reviews). Please click here; Cimarron Press Music, to see the 35 pieces published so far.
Mr. Anderson's diverse background has now led him to write for the musical stage culminating in his first dramatic musical, THE WAGER, the first musical or opera ever written, inspired by the classic story of Job. The show took nine years to write and compose and was given its World Premiere at the gorgeous 1400 seat Ikeda Theater in the new Mesa Arts Center with six shows between Feb. 17-19, 2007 in Mesa, Arizona with a 30 piece orchestra, full cast and dance Troupe. It was then filmed and edited for the creation of a professional DVD. Mr. Anderson wishes to write 2 more tuba concertos and three more dramatic musicals in the future.
He has been married to his very supportive wife of 50 years, Jeannie, and they have four adopted children whom have provided them with 8 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren to date.
Eugene Anderson, Holding A Copy Of The Piano/Vocal Score For His Play, ‘THE WAGER’.
Where Composing Is A Passion... Not A Pastime