The Utzon Grand was commisioned by Bagsværd Church in 2007 from the hands of Jørn Utzon, as a traditional black grand piano was considered completely out of concord with the overall tone in the church created by Jørn Utzon in 1976. The inauguration took place September 2009.
The Grand was to be the very last work of Jørn Utzon. After numerous drafts came out one single sketch, which was transformed into a model by his son Jan Utzon. As Jørn Utzon himself passed away in November 2008, at age of 90, the project was finished by Jan Utzon, in close cooperation with the pianomanufacturer Steingraeber und Söhne, Bayreuth, Germany.
The Utzon Grand is a semi concert Steingraeber d-232. The standard cabinet has been mounted on the outer rim with two running lists horizontally and a number of vertical intermissions, to mimic the cassette design of the organ cabinet. This design is repeated in the top lid, with a fan-like pattern, for all lines to meet. The music desk, being part of the top lid full width, carries the same design. The legs are constructed from two pieces of maple board meeting in an angle. Jan Utzon has designed the piano stool, which is clad in light green leather; same colour and material as the kneeler at the altar.
The creation of this unique instrument was made possible through large donations from the major Danish Foundation A.P. Møller (Maersk), from private donations, and spendings from Bagsværd Church itself.
See more pictures from the production here
A 20-page booklet (Dkr. 50,-) Danish/English on the Utzon Grand is for sale in the church, or you may order it here.
The booklet consists of three articles written by Jan Utzon, Udo Schmidt-Steingraeber and Jørgen Ellegård Frederiksen (organist). Photos by Ole Meyer.