Known as the Capital of Music, Vienna was a place where numerous renowned composers and poets lived, created and performed. Mozart, Johann Strauss, Brahms and Beethoven are just a few among them, not to mention the world famous spectacles performed by the Viennese Philharmonic Orchestra. Although deeply in the shadow of Vienna’s numerous famous museums, an interesting museum devoted to music and sound is located in the center of Vienna, where you can entertain yourself and find out a lot about this enjoyable leisure activity.
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Haus der Musik’s exhibitions
You will find a multitude of hands-on-exhibits and interactive activities throughout the Haus der Musik that will keep you permanently entertained along the way. Some sections let us perceive how sound is experienced, while others allow us to make our own compositions while having fun. You can also find out how composers were inspired to create eternal classics.
Some of the most entertaining installations let you compose your own personal opera by the movements of your body (Vitrostage), experiment with musical instruments that are larger than they should be (Instrumentarium) and experience how sound becomes less and less perceivable as you increase the number of hertz (Sonosphere).
Some highlights of Haus der Musik
The exhibition rooms aren’t where the fun begins and ends. As you walk through a corridor, don’t be surprised by dulcet tones that seem to originate from under your very feet. The Music Staircase acts like a piano with around a dozen keys, and the wall panel (in the photo) informs you which note you have just "stepped" on.
In the Sonosphere section, you can find various sound experiments, and tap-dancing should be among your favorites. The essence of this experiment isn’t to learn how to dance, but to experience how the sound of the dance fades away as you increase the numbers of hertz. Slowly, but surely, the initial slow tap-dance becomes an energetic tap-dance before being reduced to a buzz of a fly; ultimately, the sound disappears. The experiment is an ideal method for anyone to test their hearing capabilities.
If you have ever wondered what it would look like if wildlife could perform, take a glimpse into the children’s Vitrostage. There, you’ll hear how a crocodile sings gentle songs, see how a frog performs lively dance and compare who tap-dances better — a centipede or a human from the Sonosphere.
The Vienna Philharmonic Museum
A single section of the Haus der Musik is dedicated to the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, which is among the most prestigious institutions in the world. As you tour the exhibition space, you are carefully observed by a wax figure of Otto Nicolai, the Orchestra’s founder. If you’re in the mood to compose, grab a set of dice and compose your own symphony. In addition, you can lay eyes on various artifacts, awards and other items that belonged to conductors of the renowned musical institution.
Whenever you feel weary and could use a break while enjoying a spectacular performance from the orchestra, head to a separate part of this museum’s section, sit down and listen to the reputed New Year concert.
Opening times, tickets and more...
Haus der Musik operates all week from 10 a.m. and 10 p.m., and can be toured in an hour or so if your time is limited. That being said, you can easily spend a few hours here if time is not an issue. A full price ticket is 13 EUR (14.50 USD) for adults and 6 EUR (6.50 USD) for children. If you're not too keen on buying a full-price ticket, Haus der Musik opens its doors for free on certain occasions, and night tickets are half-price and will allow visitors to tour the museum from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.