Clinton Lewis Anderson

1957 -

Clinton Anderson, a singer, has taught in the Seventh-day Adventist school system for thirty years. Although he began as a middle school teacher who involved his students in a number of music experiences, he has spent the last decade as an academy music teacher at two different schools.

Clinton was born and raised in Hutchinson, Minnesota, the oldest of three children born to Wesley and Harriet Andersen Anderson. He and his siblings, Kimberly and Curtis, were raised in a home where music was an important activity. Their father was a self-taught musician who played guitar and sang and their mother a talented singer who had sung in choral groups in her academy years under Milo Hill and at Union College under J. Wesley Rhodes. Clinton recently commented about the important role music played in their family life:

We had music in our home all the time. Our parents sang together. My sister and I started singing together very early, and my brother joined later. Our whole family sang for events such as amateur hours, etc. and eventually, my brother, sister, and I sang male quartet songs with our dad. We began singing for different events doing quartets, trios, duets, and solos in a variety of ways, and our mom would join us when we prodded her. We all took piano, but my sister is the only one who maintained her skills on the instrument. While my brother and sister learned to play band instruments, I didnít have that privilege. My dad played guitar and sang old folk and Western songs.

Clinton attended Maplewood Academy, where he studied voice under Klaus Leukert and sang in the academy choir and Choraliers, the select choral group, under his direction. He recalls Leukert as a teacher who inspired him both musically and spiritually.

After graduating from MWA in 1976, Clinton enrolled at Union College as a theology major and then changed to middle grades education. He elected not to major in music because his real interest was in voice performance and he didn't think that specialization offered any practical career options. He did take voice lessons, sang in the choirs, and was a soloist in Randall Thompson's The Nativity According to St. Luke, singing the part of Zechariah.

He and his wife, Leah Kamben, whom he had met while at UC, accepted teaching positions at Bemidji SDA School in Minnesota, following graduation in 1981. During the next eighteen years, they involved the students in many music activities while Clinton continued to be active as a musician, singing in the church choir and The Bemidji Chorale, an unusually fine community ensemble, both conducted by noted Adventist choir director Lyle Jewell, who became an inspiring mentor.

Jewell featured him as bass soloist in the Brahms Requiem and other similar works. Clinton also sang the bass solo in Rene Clausen's A New Creation with the Bemidji State University's The Bemidji Choir and The Bemidji Chorale under the direction of P. Bradley Logan.

In 2000 the Andersons accepted positions at Minnetonka Christian Academy, where his sister, Kimberly, was teaching music. When she left at the end of their first year to take a position at Maplewood Academy, Clinton was asked to teach music at the school, which he did for the next five years. In 2006 he became the music teacher at Wisconsin Academy, where he conducts band, choir, and a handbell group and teaches voice lessons.

The Andersons have three children: Melissa Anderson-Clouzet, who is the choir director and voice teacher at Campion Academy in Colorado; Heidi Gonzalez; and Gregg. They have recorded two CDs as the Anderson Trio, Where The Roses Never Fade and What A Friend.

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Source: Information provided by Clinton Anderson, May 2011; Minnesota Birth Index (Melissa), 1935-2002.