Saturday, June 12, 2010

Day 2: Stave Church and Edvard Grieg's Home

Today we visited the Fantoft Stave Church in Bergen. This is one of the few Stave Churches still existing in Norway today. In the 12th and 13th century over 1000 were built all over Norway, but today only about 30 survive. The Fantoft Stave Church was originally built in the 13th century, and moved to the current location in the 19th century. Unfortunately it burned down in 1992, and had to be entirely reconstructed. The church is really the size of a small chapel, and is built entirely of particular pine wood, on a stone base.

The choir was able to get a very detailed introduction by a Stave Church expert (Dr. Munsen's relative), toured the church, and even sang two Norwegian songs, much to the delight of the guide and the other visitors.
Visiting the Stave Church was very exciting, but the highlight of the day was clearly our concert at Edvard Grieg's home. The concert hall was beautiful, with a view onto Edvard Grieg's "composer hut" right on the water (the red building behind the singers in the picture above). We saw many of the parents that have also travelled to Norway, and the choir sounded great.

Unfortunately we were a little bit rushed, as the Chinese Vice President was paying a surprise visit. So we returned to our Hostel, where we enjoyed a great dinner. The views of Bergen from right behind the Hostel are glorious:

Looking forward to day 3!