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Gift of grand piano benefits concert hall at Idaho State U.

POCATELLO, Idaho — LDS Foundation donated $80,000 to the Idaho State University Foundation to acquire a Steinway and Sons concert grand piano. It will be featured in the Joseph C. and Cheryl Jensen Grand Concert Hall in the new L.E. and Thelma E. Stephens Performing Arts Center.

"What a difference it will make to have a Steinway for the Jensen Grand Concert Hall," said ISU President Richard L. Bowen. "Support from individuals, corporations and foundations such as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Foundation is very much appreciated. We look forward to the cultural opportunities this gift will help provide."

"The Stephens Performing Arts Center is a magnificent facility," said President Thomas W. Clark of the Pocatello Idaho University 2nd Stake. "The reason we wanted to support the acquisition of this piano is because of the vision President Bowen has to help ISU grow and prosper, and the great asset the facility will be to the community. Providing the piano was just the right thing to do.

"Typically," President Clark said, "the foundation focuses on giving humanitarian aid. It is rare for the foundation to use funds for a cultural gift. This shows how special this gift is and how strongly Church leadership feels toward ISU."

(The Church operates a few businesses for profit, and from that profit comes the money used by the LDS Foundation.)

Joseph Jensen, president-elect of the ISU Foundation and benefactor of the Joseph C. and Cheryl Jensen Grand Concert Hall, said, "It is wonderful to see the LDS Church, as a significant member of this community, step forward and make this unusual gesture."

ISU music department personnel expressed gratitude for the gift.

"We are thrilled and extremely grateful to LDS Foundation for donating the funds for a concert Steinway," said Dr. Kori Bond of ISU.

Completion of the Jensen Grand Concert Hall is scheduled for December. — Andrew Taylor