The Indian Music Experience is a fairly new (established late 2018) addition to the museum scene in Bangalore. We recently visited this place located in a Southern suburb of the city.
The entry compound has a variety of novel musical ‘instruments’ that visitors can interact with. Children will especially like making ‘music’ on these installations.
The music experience starts on the third floor of this interestingly designed building. This section talks about the developments in popular Indian music over the past few decades before leading visitors to the classical music section. The exhibits are beautifully laid out with ample listening stations for visitors to hear representative music. There are also interactive exhibits where visitors can choose their musical instruments and they can instantly hear what an orchestra composed of their selected instruments sounds like.
The journey continues on the second floor where visitors can learn more about the development of film and folk music. The second floor also contains a large two storey wall installation composed of the various types of musical instruments played in India. One can also choose a instrument to listen to how it sounds.
The second floor also includes a set-up of a recording studio where visitors can experience the feel of recording the vocals on a song and also get their ‘song’ emailed to them.
The highlight, for me, was to see the actual shehnai and cap worn by Ustad Bismillah Khan. This section also has the tanpura and sari worn by M. S. Subbulakshmi as well as clothes and silver paan box belonging to Pandit Bhimsen Joshi.
The entry fee seemed steep initially, but it is well worth it for the wealth of information presented inside. We spent a little over two hours, but one can easily spend twice that time in this world-class museum.