Phoenix: Desert Music on a Grand Scale

4.27.2010

By Ed Salvato

A spectacular new museum has sprouted in Phoenix's searing desert.

DSCF0037DSCF0030track to gather pieces from the other 20%." On two light-drenched floors exhibits are organized geographically to cover most every corner of the globe. For example, the Africa and Middle East gallery presents musical instruments from
47 sub-Saharan and 21 North African and Middle Eastern nations. Photo right: entrance to Museum.

"Guests
will explore the ancient royal court music of Rwanda and Burundi; the
drums and brass trumpets of Benin’s vodun spiritual tradition; the imzad
fiddles of Niger’s female musicians; and an array of instruments from
the Democratic Republic of Congo," according to media contact Christoper Bell. The America and Canada room includes musical traditions from the Blues to Hip Hop.

On the ground floor visitors may also experience some of the instruments first hand, pounding African drums, hitting a gigantic Asian gong, or plucking at a Japanese harp. 

Mim2 All guests are handed headsets that are activated in proximity to the exhibits. Each exhibit has an explanatory video depicting usage of the particular musical instrument by locals from that country or region. Photo left: bagpiper and ancient bagpipes from the Scotland/Ireland exhibit.

Judging from the ear-to-ear grins sported by just about every museum visitor on a recent visit by this report, this is one of those rare museums that is a true joy for young and old alike. For more information about the museum, visit their website.

 

DSCF0037
Story and images by Ed Salvato; detail of wall vibrant wall mural at the Musical Instrument Museum

 

A spectacular new museum has sprouted in Phoenix's searing desert, a $250 million development housing 12,000 musical instruments in a  200,000 square foot building on a 20-acre desert site in northern Phoenix. The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) opened to the public on Saturday, April 27 and currently displays 3,000 instruments from its collection which features instruments of all types from all over the world.

"We have instruments from 80% of the world's countries," says a company spokesperson, "and we're on  DSCF0030track to gather pieces from the other 20%." On two light-drenched floors exhibits are organized geographically to cover most every corner of the globe. For example, the Africa and Middle East gallery presents musical instruments from
47 sub-Saharan and 21 North African and Middle Eastern nations. Photo right: entrance to Museum.

"Guests
will explore the ancient royal court music of Rwanda and Burundi; the
drums and brass trumpets of Benin’s vodun spiritual tradition; the imzad
fiddles of Niger’s female musicians; and an array of instruments from
the Democratic Republic of Congo," according to media contact Christoper Bell. The America and Canada room includes musical traditions from the Blues to Hip Hop.

On the ground floor visitors may also experience some of the instruments first hand, pounding African drums, hitting a gigantic Asian gong, or plucking at a Japanese harp. 

Mim2 All guests are handed headsets that are activated in proximity to the exhibits. Each exhibit has an explanatory video depicting usage of the particular musical instrument by locals from that country or region. Photo left: bagpiper and ancient bagpipes from the Scotland/Ireland exhibit.

Judging from the ear-to-ear grins sported by just about every museum visitor on a recent visit by this report, this is one of those rare museums that is a true joy for young and old alike. For more information about the museum, visit their website.

 

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