Indian Music Experience, Bengaluru, Bangalore Overview
Spread across 50,000 square feet, the Indian Music Experience in Bengaluru is the first interactive music museum of the nation that is most innovatively disrupting the conventional notion of museums among visitors. The Museum exhibits everything about Indian music under a single roof, right from classical to folk, regional and Bollywood.
An ideal family outing place along with a rich insight into India’s vast and varied music heritage, the museum has a wide variety of musical genres, themed galleries creating unique melodies and musical artefacts. It took several years and lots of collective efforts to bring this majestic and awesome museum into existence. It has now become one of the most visited spots not only among local residents but also tourists from all over the world.
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Ticket Prices and Timings
Ticket prices for the museum are as follows:
Adults and Children (above 12 years) – INR 250 Children (5-12 years) – INR 150 Children below five years – Free Senior Citizens (60+) – INR 150 Group (more than 10) – INR 200 School groups – INR 100 Foreign nationals – INR 500
*All the prices mentioned above are per person.
One can also book tickets online. Tickets are valid for one full day, and one can visit anytime between 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.Museum also remains open on all public holidays.
History of Indian Music Experience
Indian Music Experience, based in Bengaluru, is an initiative of Indian Music Trust and is the coinage of Mr MR Jaishankar, Chairman and Managing Director of the Brigade Group. Being an avid connoisseur of art and music, Mr Jaishankar was highly inspired by Seattle’s Experience Music Project which was founded by Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft. It took nearly a decade to be finally opened for public on November 2018 and is the fruit of the labour of some of India’s best-known musicians, musicologists, and sound and design experts such as Manasi Prasad, Dr Pappu Venugopal Rao etc.
The site for the museum was allocated in 2008, and the building was completed in 2013. Later on, the iconic sound garden was inaugurated in 2017.
Architecture of Indian Music Experience
The museum is overall designed by Gallagher and Associates, who also helped create the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles. The Sound Garden was co-created by Svaram, along with designer Michael Foley.
The setting and interiors of the Indian Music Experience are designed along the lines of how Raga, the melodic framework of Indian Classical music, is constructed that reminds one of the musical ideas of depth, pitch, volume, texture and scale. The centre is divided into three sections: the Sound Garden, the actual museum that comprises eight galleries as well as a learning centre. Paved along with the milestones of see, hear, touch and discover, the museum is divided into nine galleries, each of them representing the unique aspect of music.
The building works over multiple levels that are interconnected via ramps and steps. The entrance to the museum is through a musical plaza and it climbs downwards to an exhibition space that acts as a semi-formal performance space. Galleries are located on the first and the second levels while the learning centre at the uppermost level. The ground level serves as a lobby which houses music store, café and other administrative areas.
This one of its kind museum set up in the lively city of Bengaluru is amazingly designed in a way that it has something for everyone, be it a casual visitor with no in depth knowledge of music or a trained musician. The first artistic vibe that you witness during this musical journey is in the Sound Garden which is an open air collection of musical sculptures flaunting the fascinating use of physics. It houses several mega-sized floors and wall-mounted xylophones, gong installations made of wood and stone and blocks of granite called musical stones with special grooves and openings that produce distinct musical notes when you rub wet hands over them.
Indian Music Experience, as mentioned above, has eight thematic galleries that are exquisitely and informatively dedicated to Hindustani classical and folk music traditions from across India. A large number of sections are also set up to make visitors familiar with the indie music scene and cross-cultural music traditions.
The exhibition also traces back the journey of several contemporary music bands across genres and regions. From Kolkata’s Park Street of the 1960s to Bombay’s Rang Bhavan, from Bombay’s jazz age to the short-lived but seminal fusion band Shakti, from Shillong’s Lou Majaw to Carnatic folk-rock band Agam and what not! This interactive museum has it all to revive old aged melodious memories of music from your childhood.
Indian Music experience also showcases most delicately the gamete of exhibitions on famous musical personalities, musical instruments, techniques and history that undoubtedly shaped the journey of Indian music. It also has a mock recording studio that creates tunes on touch-screen tablets and gives tourists the once in a lifetime experience of karaoke-style singing.
One of the major attractions of this museum is a gallery that comprises the songs of struggle proudly taken from the political advancement of India over centuries of freedom struggle. Having over 35 versions of Vande Mataram, this gallery will surely give you goosebumps.
The Museum also boasts several other innovative music installations such as Sound Off, Find your ‘Shruti’, Background Score and Mix the Music in collaboration with British Council.
Other features of the Museum
Other than fascinating exhibitions of different aspects of music, Indian Music Experience also provides facilities like Sound Spa under the guidance of well-trained music therapists.
The Museum also hosts musical events regularly that are graced by the presence of imminent music personalities from all over the world.
Indian Music Experience also serves as yet another centre of music learning wherein curriculum-based regular classes, library space and workshops are being conducted for all level of music enthusiasts. One can easily enrol himself in these classes by contacting the concerned department in the museum.
There are also seminar halls, performance theatres and terrace amphitheatre that provides ideal ambience and customises set up for hosting events and parties.
In addition to the above, the IMA comprises a cafe for refreshments and a gift store for music-related memorabilia.
Wear comfortable footwear and clothes because there is a lot to walk and explore.
The Museum also has several exciting and stunning photo booths so don’t forget to carry your phone.
Try to get there early because the museum has a lot to offer and explore.
Since the museum is located in one of the prime localities of Bengaluru, one can easily reach to Indian Music Experience via any public transports such as city buses, auto-rickshaws, taxis/cabs and metro trains. The museum is 2.2km from Yelachenahalli metro station (green line). The Kempegowda Bus Terminus or the Majestic Bus station is the major bus stop of Bengaluru and it is approximately 13 Kms from Indian Music Experience. One has to hail bus number 215 to reach there. Contact details- 080 4090 8054