"When you hear Merle Kollom play concerts on a carillon, you hear a real musician playing. She is playing with expression and control of the sound quality and all nuances, and with the heart. She makes the bells sing. She is a marvelous carillonneur, and a splendid ambassador for the instrument.""
Prof. Peter LangbergMerle's carillon teacher, honorary member of the Guild of Carillonneurs in North America, Past President of the Danish Guild of Carillonneurs and of the Nordic Society of Campanology and Carillon, Past Vice President of the World Carillon Federation, founder of the Scandinavian Carillon School, organist and carillonneur
“It was a great pleasure to hear Merle Kollom's play on the carillon. Her performance was very musical, present, communicative and varied.”"
Randi Elisabeth MortensenOrganist of the Odense Cathedral, Denmark
Dear Merle! Words are unable to express the gratitude for everything you did for The Four Freshmen while they were with you. All details were taken care of from top to bottom. You took care of coordinating transportation, technical equipment, hotels, kept punctual schedules, and even translated when needed, you did it all with perfection. We look forward to the opportunity of working with you again!"
Dina Sheets-RothVice President, International Ventures Incorporated
From the first day in Estonia until our last concert we where amazed by Merle's professionalism, accuracy, tolerance and sense of humor. After all we called Merle Kollom “ManSound's favorite producer of all times”. And now we are not just a "group" and "producer" - we are close friends, and this friendship means a lot for us."
Dmitry VygovskyDirector of ManSound, Kiev, Ukraine
Dear Merle! It was a wonderful experience to bring the world’s oldest living culture, Descendance for Estonian audience. Working with you was sheer delight, your professionalism and attention to details was second to none. You always managed also to create a harmony and goodwill which kept our spirits high."
Jose CalarcoDirector of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Dance Theatre, Australia
Merle Kollom is an active cultural figure in Estonia. She has worked as the organist of the Äksi Andreas Church, the head of the concert department at the H. Eller Music College of Tartu, the music producer of the Estonian state concert institution Eesti Kontsert (Estonian Concert), the project manager of local and international culture projects, as a producer of radio shows, documentaries and CD/DVD productions. She has participated in continuing programs of culture policy and management in the USA, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Germany.
Merle Kollom holds a Master of Arts degree in organ pedagogy, a Bachelor in church music and theology. She graduated the Scandinavian Carillon School under the tutelage of prof. Peter Langberg in June 2019, becoming the first carillon professional in Estonian. As a carilloneur, she has performed in Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Germany, The Netherlands, and at the new carillons opening ceremony of St. Nicholas Church in Kiev, Ukraine. She has performed in carillon-promotional concerts with the jazz group Trio X of Sweden at the Uppsala Concert and Congress Hall, with Estonian leading instrumentalists, the saxophonist Lembit Saarsalu, the accordionist Jaak Lutsoja and the Spanish tenor Germán Gholami.
Merle Kollom is the artistic leader of the Tartu Town Hall carillon since 2001. In 2016 she was leading large renovation and extension works of mentioned carillon in cooperation with the Royal Eijsbouts Bell Foundry, and this project was awarded as “The action of the year 2016 in Tartu”. She has promoted carillon art on several radio and TV shows, has produced documentaries about the Tartu Town Hall carillon, and initiated the 1st Estonian carillon tunes contest in 2017. In 2018 (European Year of Cultural Heritage) she started with carillon promotional concert-lectures called “500 hundred years of musical secret”.
As an organist, Merle Kollom has participated in symphony orchestra and choir productions, in unique ensembles and crossover projects. She has cooperated with various acknowledged Estonian soloists, German vibraphonist Volker Frischling, American jazz vocalist Eve Cornelious among others. In the summer 2012 she debuted in an uncommon organ ensemble called Ex Improvisio Quartet, cooperating with internationally recognized Estonian musicians: Hanna-Liina Võsa (vocal), Lembit Saarsalu (saxophone), Jaak Lutsoja (accordion).
As a producer, Merle Kollom has initiated several concert series and festivals on both local and international scale, produced more than 2000 concerts from classical chamber music to jazz ballet, including a world premiere of the jazz opera “Manon” composed by “the cornerstone of Nordic Jazz” - Heikki Sarmanto (Finland), a gala concert of the 375th anniversary celebrations of Tartu University, honored by the presence of Queen Silvia of Sweden. Merle Kollom has cooperated with many jazz giants such as the legendary singer Freddy Cole, pianist Monty Alexander, Hammond B3 organist Dr. Lonnie Smith, the vocal quartet The Four Freshmen among others. In 2003 Merle Kollom was awarded as “Person of the year” by Estonian Concert.
Merle Kollom - carillon solo concerts / Summer 2020
NB! ***CANCELED due to corona restrictions
July 4 at 11 Kieler Kloster, Kiel ***
July 4 at 17 Hamburg, Mahnmal St. Nikolai ***
July 5 at 15.00 – Parochialkirche, Berlin
July 16 at 14.00 Aarhus Radhuset, Denmark ***
August 4 at 18.00 Magdeburg City Hall ***
July 16 at 14.00 Aarhus Radhuset ***
July 18 at 12.00 Brøndby Strand kirke
July 31 at 14.00 Thisted kirke
August 1 at 15..00 For Frelsers kirke, Copenhagen
August 2 at 14.00 Kalundborg kirke
August 6 at 19.00 O.L. Vrouwetoren, Breda
August 7 at 19.00 Martinustoren, Cuijk
August 8 at 19.00 St. Martinustoren, Venlo "Carillon +"
Trio Merle Kollom, German Gholami (tenor), Jaak Lutsoja (accordion)
August 14 at 19.00 Sint-Quintinuskathedraal, Hasselt