July 27, 2015

Musical Instrument Museum (MIM)

Take a day and treat yourself to something both interesting and fun.  You will need 4 or 5 hours to really do justice and get a real feel for this place.  Café Allegro on the ground floor is a great place to plan your halfway mark so you can refuel and rest up for the second half.
Arriving at the southwest corner of Tatum Blvd and Mayo Blvd in Scottsdale, you will find plenty of parking.  Before you Muscial Instrument Museum - Entranceis a massive building with beautiful stone siding and architectural details that preview the artistry of music waiting inside.  Once you get your ticket, you are handed headphones.  When you begin your tour, you will find why headphones make this experience even better.  You can view a short video or just head upstairs to start this musical instrument journey through time and places.
Geographically, you will discover musical instruments from Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Oceania, Latin America, the U. S., Canada and Europe...all on the second floor.  My wife & I took a break right before Latin America and headed to the café, where you will see quotes on the wall heaping compliments on the museum.  Afterwards, we finished Latin America through Europe.  Then we headed down a circular stairway that framed a tile graphic of the world...a work of art in itself.
Downstairs, you will find the Artist Gallery (outfits of famous performers), Mechanical Music Gallery (where demonstrations are conducted periodically) and the Experience Gallery, where adults turn into kids playing the various MIM - World Graphic on Tileinstruments like some of those seen in the museum.  Save the Experience Gallery for last.  We did and came out laughing as we headed to the car.
We were lucky that day, because a group of school kids from France were at the museum on their day off.  This choir group had been touring the U. S.  As we headed to lunch, they did an impromptu performance accompanied by a piano.  They were impressive.  I hope something like that happens when you go.
This is a museum experience that you will remember.  Find out what a slit drum and a zither is.  Discover who invented the saxophone.  Learn which animals and reptiles became part of these exhibits.  Watch for similar instruments from continent to continent.  Don't forget to use your headphones...no talking... just music from around the world.  Musical Instrument Museum  Enjoy!

~ David Ramey

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