Kalam, Endel and Erika, Papers

Finding Aid



Immigration History Research Center, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota

Descriptive summary

Abstract: Endel Kalam - a conductor and violinist, Received his musical education in Estonia, Conductor - NY philharmonic orchestra Phil. St. Trinite (Haiti); Boston Univ Symphony and chamber orchestra; New England chamber orchestra. Newspaper clippings, copies, pamphlets, concert programs, correspondence, drawings (Erika), printed matter.
Quantity: 5 linear in.
Collection ID: IHRC3600


Collection transferred to the IHRC from the Estonian Archives in the U.S.A. (EAU) in 2003-2005. It was processed as part of a collaborative project between the Estonian Archives in the USA (Lakewood, New Jersey), the National Archives of Estonia (NAE), and the IHRC in March 2011. Gerli Raadik and Peeter Väljas of the National Archives in Tallinn, Estonia, worked with IHRC staff on the project.


Endel Kalam was born on 19.12.1915 in village Nurmekunde, province Tver, Russia and died on 11.12.1985 in Boston USA. He studied in Boy’s Gymnasium of County Viljandi, 1936-1944 in Tallinn Conservatory violin and conducting. 1938-1944 was a violinist and a conductor in Estonian Broadcasting Orchestra. In 1937 he was a creator and a leader of the jazz ensemble Melody Makers. 1943 he studied conducting in Salzburi C.Krauss and in 1952-1954 in Boston L.Bernstein courses. 1944 he fled to Germany. There he was until 1949 a leader of the Estonian music troupes in Lübeck and in Blomberg. 1949 emigrated to USA, where he worked as a viola player in the Boston Symphony Orchestra and since 1969 he was a viola teacher in Boston University. He conducted several orchestras (New England Chamber Orchestra, Boston Pops-Orchestra). He also participated in several orchestras and ensembles as musician (Herni Temianka chamber ensemble, Baltic string quartet, Trio da Camera, Boston Opera Orchestra, Boston Ballet, Puerto Rico Symphony, music organization "Händel and Haydn Society" orchestra, Roman Totenberg Ensemble, Chicago Little Symphony and Boston String Quartet). 1962-1985 he was a program director of Marlboro festival. Social activities in organizations: president of the Baltic-American Association, member of the Boston Estonian Society, founding member and member of the board of the Estonian Sound of Art Center in USA, chairman of the Estonian Music Foundation named Ludvig Juht. Andel and his wife Erika had a son Tõnu (b. 1948).



The Kalam, Endel and Erika collection is available for public research.


The Kalam, Endel and Erika collection is the physical property of the Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota.

For further information regarding the copyright, please contact the IHRC.


The Kalam, Endel and Erika Papers, Estonian American Collection, Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota


Related to document in National Archives of Estonia ERA.3635.1.310

Detailed Description of the Collection

BOX 1. Endel and Erika Kalam

FOLDER 1. Correspondence: mostly letters from composer Udo Kasemets 1947-1994
FOLDER 2. Programs and booklets of concerts where Endel Kalam participated as a conductor and a performer, with the notes by Erika Kalam[?]; printed matter.
Printed matter: article by E. Kalam: "Eesti muusika paguluses" = "Estonian music in exile"; article by J. Aavik (signed copy) "Mõningaid märkmeid eesti rahvalaulust" = "Some remarks about Estonian folk songs"
FOLDER 3. Programs and booklets of concerts of Estonian interpreters in DP camps in Germany, Sweden, USA and elsewhere. 1945-1971
FOLDER 4. Artwork of Erika Kalam: painted greeting cards (32 pcs)
FOLDER 5. Newspaper clippings from 1940s -50s
FOLDER 6. Photocopies of newspaper articles from 1940s -50s