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Rare Piano Finds Permanent Home at Dearborn Church

Cherry Hill Presbyterian Church recently purchased a Bosendorfer Imperial concert grand piano for use by local musicians.

Submitted by Margaret Blohm

The sanctuary of Cherry Hill Presbyterian Church is now home to a rare Bosendorfer Imperial concert grand piano purchased from a private owner in Denver, Colo.

Bosendorfer pianos, hand built in Vienna, Austria, are world renowned for their innovation and rich tonal quality.

The piano, which has 97 keys instead of the traditional 88 keys, is recognized as a musical instrument phenomenon. Some of the world’s most famous concert musicians have concertized and endorsed the Imperial Bosendorfer, including: Franz Liszt, Bela Bartok, Claude Debussy, Joseph-Maurice Ravel, and Richard Wagner.

“This piano is a wonderful complement to our church’s Austin pipe organ,” said Jean Thayer, Cherry’s Hill’s music director and organist.

The organ was manufactured by one of the oldest organ manufacturers in the United States. The pipe organ was custom built for Cherry Hill's sanctuary with 43 ranks and more than 2,000 pipes. According to church records, the organ was first played at Cherry Hill Presbyterian in 1959 and continues to be in excellent playing condition.

“The Bosendorfer is a marvelous instrument that enriches our worship. It is Cherry Hill’s privilege to share this unique piano with the community,” said Rev. Neeta R. Nichols, interim pastor.

Cherry Hill Presbyterian seeks to extend its community outreach by making the Bosendorfer piano available for other members of the community to enjoy. Church officials welcome individuals, music groups and other organizations to contact the church about opportunities for concerts and recitals that can be held in the church’s 500-seat sanctuary.

“You won’t believe the difference in sound quality until you hear this piano. It’s exceptional,” said John Matthews, Jr., a member of the Cherry Hill Presbyterian congregation.

For more information, call the church office at 313-563-4800, or visit www.cherryhillchurch.org.

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