Hello! I am Erle Kont, a 25-year old Estonian conductor and clarinetist living in Helsinki. After six years of clarinet studies in Sibelius Academy with the world-famous Kari Kriikku and Harri Mäki, I am now studying conducting in the same school with Petri Komulainen. Maestro Paavo Järvi has described me as a “natural conducting talent, who has the whole package” and I have done my best not to let my gift go to waste.

I became the artistic director of Tapiola Entertainment Band and conductor of Apollo Wind Band. I have conducted almost all of Finland’s professional wind bands and helped Tallinn Firefighters Wind Orchestra win 3rd prize in an international wind band competition in Jelgava in the highest artistic category.

I am very open-minded and like collaborating with different art forms. My latest field of study is the music by American composer Aaron Copland (1900-1990) and Estonian composers, especially Ester Mägi (1922 – ). In 2017 I founded a contemporary music organisation TaHe (Tartu Sound) that promotes the music of young composers in Estonia and teaches musicians how to play contemporary music. I have premiered about 20 pieces as a conductor and clarinetist from young Estonian and Finnish composers.

As a clarinetist, I am a prize winner of 14 national and international competitions. I have won the international Eduard Medinš competition (2010), Bohuslav Martinu and Viktor Kalabis’ competitions in ISA summer academy (2015), national clarinet competitions (2009, 2011) and David Otto Wirkhaus’ competitions for woodwinds (2007-2009) among other competitions. On top of that I have been a finalist in Chieri clarinet competition in Italy (2015) and Czech Clarinet Art competition in Czech (2015). In 2018 I won the special prize for the best interpretation for Tõnis Kaumann’s new piece as well as a diploma from the final of the Estonian National Clarinet Competition. I have performed as a soloist with many Estonian orchestras, such as the Estonian Music Teachers Symphony Orchestra and Tartu University Symphony Orchestra.

Many concert engagements as a conductor, orchestra player and chamber musician keep me busy, but I always make room for interesting projects.

Looking forward to hearing from you!