top of page

Buksnes Church

Already in 2005, work began to acquire Lofoten's first concert grand piano. Buksnes Church in Gravdal - which turned 100 years old this year - was the necessary "breakbar".


The mayor of Vestvågøy at the time - Guri Ingebrigtsen - took up the challenge, but it took some time before the process got started in earnest. In early spring 2007, she called the bank managers of Lofoten Sparebank and Sparebank 1 Nord-Norge to a meeting. Knut Kirkesæther participated as a professional. In the meeting, Ingebrigtsen more or less told what the various bank managers were to do. And they listened carefully.

She came out of the meeting with a promise of NOK 500,000, which at the time was only NOK 200,000 below the price of a new Steinway & Son's model C, second largest model. Knut Kirkesæther contacted Steinway Norway at Thron Ihrby and made him aware of what was going on. He sympathized with the situation so much that he promised a one-year-old instrument for NOK 600,000. Only NOK 100,000 was then missing.


During a board meeting of the Lofoten International Chamber Music Festival - just one month before the festival in 2007 - the matter was discussed. As a new concert grand piano in Lofoten would be of great importance to the implementation of the festival, there was a great desire to find a solution. It was at this meeting that Inger Benjaminsen (board member) announced that she and her husband Edvard wanted to sponsor the grand piano with the remaining NOK 100,000. This was followed by a few long seconds as everyone wondered if they had heard correctly.


Lofoten's first Steinway & Sons model C arrived at Buksnes Kirke before the festival. The instrument was solemnly inaugurated during a concert on Tuesday 10 July at 1 pm where Nils Mortensen and Kalle Randalu performed Schubert's Fantasy in A minor "Lebensstürme" - four-handed.

bottom of page