With its large choir and modern character, Borge Church was completed in 1987. With its organ mounted in front of the church and its good acoustics, the church became an excellent concert hall from day one, and became the first choice for many actors. But after Buksnes Church got its concert grand piano in 2007- which also had a new and good organ – this changed. This was not satisfying for Borge.
The then leader of the church council, the music-interested Trond Handberg, started a fundraising campaign with an ambition to finance a used Steinway & Sons for Borge Church. It was envisioned to be able to manage 4-500,000,-.
Local business is getting involved
Not long after, Handberg had a meeting with Werner Martinsen, bank manager at the local bank – Lofoten Sparebank. The bank would turn 100 years old in 2009, and it turned out that the bank was established by the parish priest in Borge. It was now time for “pay back”.
Lofoten Sparebank provided as much as 1 million for the purchase of a grand piano for Borge Church. Again, Thron Irby in Steinway Norwayhad sympathy for the case. He also promised this time a discount of 100,000,- for a one-year-old Steinway & Sons model D. The instrument had only been used for a recording with Leif Ove Andsnes. The grand piano had been picked out by Andsnes himself.
A world-class instrument in place
Lofoten International Chamber Music Festivalused the piano for the first time in the summer of 2009. The instrument was then referred to as «Norway’s best». The festival’s piano technician – Thomas Hübsch – worked for the Steinway factory in Hamburg at the time. He could not understand that the factory had sold the grand piano. This was so good that it should only have been rented out for very special occasions – for the greatest pianists.
Recording on the grand piano in Borge Church:
- Nils Mortensen: “Im Freien” (2012)
Recordings on the grand piano before it came to Borge Church:
- Leif Ove Andsnes: “Robert Schumann: Complete music for piano trio” (2008) in Fredrikstad Church. With Christian Tetzlaf, violin and Tanja Tetzlaf, cello