Metz Carillon bell tower to move to the arboretum


As part of the relocation and renovation, the Metz Carillon will be upgraded with four new bells, bringing the total to 65 bells and making it a grand carillon, one of fewer than 30 in the world and one of only a handful nationwide. Courtesy Photo and Courtesy Photo Buy Photos

The IU Metz Carillon, currently located on 17th Street by Jordan Avenue, will be moved the center of campus as part of an IU Bicentennial initiative.

The plan was approved by the IU Board of Trustees, according to an IU press release.

The tower currently contains 61 bells that have a five-octave range. However, its current location has a limited area for an audience, which has caused it to rarely be used in a performance setting. As part of the relocation, four bells will be added to the tower.

“I am delighted that this superb instrument will once again become a central part of musical life on the IU campus,” IU President Michael McRobbie said in the release. “It will open up a whole new area of music where our students, faculty, staff and visitors will have a wonderful new opportunity to experience the renown of our talented Jacobs School of Music faculty and students.”

The tower will be moved near the IU Arboretum in hopes it will attract regular concerts and audiences, according to the release.

To help with this, IU will bring distinguished carillonneurs, players of a carillon, from around the world.

Worldwide there are about 600 carillons, with 60 at colleges and universities in the United States, according to the release. The addition of the four bells will make it a grand carillon, one of fewer than 30 in the world.

The instrument is named after Arthur Metz who supported IU through scholarships, instrument donations and as a member of the IU Foundation board, according to the release.

The bells were originally crafted by Royal Eijsbouts in the Netherlands and inscribed with quotes about music from American and English authors.

“While the Metz Carillon has a commanding presence and proud history, it is an often overlooked and underappreciated treasure on our IU Bloomington campus, primarily because it is only rarely played,” said Gwyn Richards, dean of the Jacobs School of Music, in the press release.

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