Did you know the grand piano used at the Vernon And District Performing Arts Centre is owned by the North Okanagan Community Concert Association (NOCCA)? The current nine foot Steinway concert grand was manufactured in 1887, reconditioned in the 1950’s and subsequently purchased by NOCCA from the Steinway factory in Hamburg, Germany in 1954.
The piano has served us well for many years. It has been well maintained, rebuilt and refurbished several times but it is no longer suitable for a concert hall such as the Vernon And District Performing Arts Centre. Therefore NOCCA is purchasing and rebuilding a new Hamburg Steinway concert grand piano which will be delivered in 2016.
Our “new” nine foot Hamburg Steinway was originally built in 1978 and purchased by the Kultur Casino Saal in Berne, Switzerland. During its time as a concert piano its keys were caressed by pianists such as Maurizio Pollini, Martha Argerich, Edith Wiens, Elizabeth Leonskaya and Tatiyana Nikolayeva.
In 1988 the piano was purchased by concert pianist Thierry Gudel, who brought the piano with him to Canada when he moved here in 1995. Mr. Gudel now lives and works in Vancouver and after making a personal decision to downsize his residence, requested Verhnjak Pianos in White Rock to find a buyer. After several technicians’ reports, as well as gracious playing by Ian Parker and Sarah Hagen, NOCCA made the decision to purchase the piano and to proceed with the necessary refurbishment.
The cost of the new piano is $86,000 including a complete rebuild, refinishing, delivery and voicing. Most of this is being covered by NOCCA’s piano fund – a result of many years savings. However, we are short by $10,000.
To help raise the needed funds we are “selling” piano keys to music lovers in the community. For $100 you can sponsor one of the 88 keys… Or why not buy an octave (12 keys)? A large graphic piano keyboard will be on display in the Performing Arts Centre during the 2015/16 season. It will show the name of each donor who supports the piano fund on the key(s) they have sponsored and selected.
To sponsor a key please contact Cathie Stewart at 250-546-9160 (Armstrong) or email firstname.lastname@example.org