It’s hard to find people who enjoy classical music as much as the Central Europeans. Free outdoor opera, concerts in every corner and performances in the most brilliant music temples—the music scene here is truly astounding. Another musical center in Austria: Salzburg.
One of these music sanctuaries is the Haus der Musik (Vienna House of Music) located in the Palace of Archduke Charles, in the old part of the Austrian capital, between St. Stephen’s Cathedral and the State Opera.
The admirable Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in the same building in the year 1842. Today, the Haus der Musik is the home of the museum of the orchestra, which is set in the palace’s first-floor staterooms. The museum shares space with other attractions such as the waltz dice game (an interactive activity that allows participants to compose a waltz). At the museum, highlights of the Philharmonic’s New Year’s Concert are played every hour in a condensed version of only 35 minutes.
This building holds a great deal of history, but visitors are also invited to listen, to play, to see, to write and to discover its many secrets. Music lovers also have the privilege of playing virtual orchestra conductor for a few minutes. Just remember, the musicians obey the dictates of the director and even applaud if he /she does well. Interestingly, if you fail in your effort, they may clap as well.
It is clear that for the management team at the House of Music, information and education are just as important as entertainment. In fact, in their real and virtual rooms, visitors learn how sounds are created as well as the exact concept of music.
The Museum leaves room for amusing activities. For example, in the Instrumentarium you can get inside king size instruments. Another game is to compose your own music in the Futuresphère, where the sounds and the atmosphere created by movements, touch, and voice are stored and mixed in a Future Music Blender with creative ideas from other visitors, to shape new universes of sound.
The third floor is dedicated to the composers. Many of the greatest musicians in history settled in Vienna: Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Strauss, Mahler… And Mozart, born in Salzburg, used to live in the capital.
In the House of Music`s store, you can buy CDs, musical instruments, and music literature. There is also a restaurant overlooking the historic center of Vienna, where visitors can regain their strength and continue the tour of the capital of classical music. ■
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