Leon “Vandy” Vanderwater (1898-1998) was raised in Kankakee, IL and moved to Bloomington, IL in 1921 to work for the Cable Piano Company. He was considered to be a "piano tuner extraordinaire," having cared for pianos for individuals, concert artists, Illinois Wesleyan University, Illinois State Normal University, and Eisenberger's Department Store. Mr. Vanderwater lived in Bloomington from 1921 until his death in 1998. He is buried in East Lawn Memorial Gardens in Bloomington, IL.
Vanderwater saved many programs (some autographed) from illustrious artists who appeared in the Bloomington/Normal area. Examples are Vladimir Horowitz, Leon Fleisher, Robert Merrill, Rudolph Serkin, Ignace Jan Paderewski, Lili Pons, Jose Iturbi, Leontyne Price, Van Cliburn, André Watts, just to name a few. The programs represent a brief musical history of performances sponsored by the Amateur Musical Club, Illinois State University, Illinois Wesleyan University, The Bloomington-Normal Symphony Society, and The Community Concert Association, among others.