16 February 2014

Back to Belgium: Musical Instrument Museum in Brussels

When my conference finished in Leuven, I headed home by taking the train from Leuven to Brussels. However, I planned it such that I checked out of the hotel early, but my flight wasn't until later in the evening. That meant that I pretty much had the whole day to explore Brussels. I have been to this city before, back in March 2013, when I traveled with a friend to this area for the first time. So I already had an idea what the city has to offer, but there are still plenty of things I wanted to see, and so I opted to see some more while I was in town.

My plan that day was to eat breakfast in the hotel, and then check out. After checking out, I took the train, dropped off my stuff in the luggage racks, and explored the city. I was meeting someone for lunch, but after a few hours of lunch and chat, we parted ways. Then I found the Musical Instrument Museum.

Belgium has a colonial history, and the museum aptly features musical instruments from non-European cultures, both from Asia and Africa. The pictures I have taken and displayed above show this part of the museum. I opted to get the audio guide, which was fascinating, because you just have to stand in front of the instrument, and the audio guide will play music performed by that instrument. I myself spent quite a few hours in this museum.

What is more interesting for me, however, is their huge collection of keyboards. The displays pretty much categorizes the history of this instrument, from harpsichords, to pianos, to player pianos, to synthesizers. If only they allowed people to actually play these instruments, then I would have been very excited.

Overall, I enjoyed my visit here. As I am a frustrated musician, I enjoyed seeing the musical instruments on display. I was here for about two hours, from mid-afternoon until they closed. I recommend this to anyone having more than just a cursory interest in musical instruments.

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