Musical Instrument Museum
Do you know that the saxophone was invented in Brussels? Musical Instrument Museum in Brussels not only displays a large collection of musical instruments but also lets you listen to the sounds of the selected ones. The museum is housed in former Old England department store which opened in 1899. The building itself is a classic example of art in today’s world. The museum has more than 8000 Instruments and is a part of a renowned Royal Museum of Arts.
The museum has four floors which are organized by classifications of musical instruments. Two floors are dedicated to traditional instruments from around the world and western classic musical instruments. There is a floor for mechanical and electronic instruments. Another floor is for keyboards, considered one of the only European contributions in the musical instruments.
The place is a wonderful display of art for the music lovers. The audio guides are provided while visiting the museum. These audio guides play the sounds of the instruments when you go near them. You will be totally amazed by the enchanting sounds of many of the instruments that you have never heard before. The audio guide is more focused on the sounds of the instruments rather than only explaining the complete history of all instruments. This makes listening to the audio guide an unforgettable experience. The floors of the Museum have cool galleries from which you can see the lovely views of the city and gardens.
History of the Musical Instrument Museum
The first brick of the museum was planted when it was attached to the Brussels Royal Music Conservatory in 1877 to teach the students about early age instruments. There were two collections of Instruments present at that time. One of them belonged to a Belgian musicologist “Francois-Joseph Fetis” and the other one was gifted to King Leopold II by Rajah
Workshops & Classes at Musical Instrument Museum
There are several workshops and classes at the museum regularly held for all ages. There are sessions for individuals and for groups as well. There are guided English tours available for the groups of 6 to 15 persons that must be booked in advance. Children are taught through interesting and motivating stories to feel the sounds and rhythm of musical instruments.
There is a concert hall on the 8th floor with 200 seats capacity. The concert hall has another purpose of a recording studio for the museum’s own collection of music. You can hire this concert hall for your private functions, meetings and events. The museum hosts around 130 musical events every year.
There is a library at the museum with a rich collection of organology (study of musical instruments). This library hosts a great deal of information about traditional music, ethnomusicology, western and evolution of music through the history.
Shop at Musical Instruments Museum
Just like almost all other museums, this museum also has a shop from which you can buy souvenirs, books, CDs and many types of musical gadgets. It is a good place to buy gifts because the ideas are innovative and different than the normal gift shops.
Award for Disable Friendly Workshops
The museum has recently won ‘prix CAP48 de l’Entreprise Citoyenne’ in February 2020 for its superb efforts to entertain the people with disabilities. The workshops in the museum are custom made to understand the personal situation of each individual.
Timings and Ticket Pricing
The Museum opens from 9.30 am to 5 pm on weekdays and 10 am to 5 pm on weekends and public holidays. The ticket price for adults is around 10 Euros per person and free for children and teenagers under 18 years of age.