This is the only museum in China which is dedicated solely to pianos. The Piano Museum is located on the Gulangyu Island in the Tide Viewing Tower of Shuzhuang Garden. The island is often known as the piano island simply because of the long known popularity of pianos among the local people. This museum depicts the culture and history of pianos. Expert musicians as well as uninitiated visitors would be charmed by the beautiful pianos, the artistry involved in creating them and the lovely music to come away more knowledgeable about the beauty and history of pianos.
Information About the Piano Museum
The unique Piano Museum is spread over two full stories and it exhibits more than 100 ancient pianos that are world famous. The pianos have been collected from the Americas, Australia, Britain, Austria and France. All pianos were collected by Hu Youyi, an overseas patriotic Chinese. He was born on the Gulangyu Island.
An Ancient Piano in the Museum
The collection includes the popular Steinwat and Sons pianos which were made in the US during the beginning of the 19th century. The collection also includes the oldest and the biggest vertical piano, the tallest upright piano in the world made by Broadward and Sons and many more. Exploring the world of pianos, you can listen to beautiful old melodies and also get the unique opportunity to play music on these old, precious musical instruments.
The Piano Collection
The piano museum was opened to public on 22nd December, 2001 and it is the first and only of its kind in China. The museum has a huge range of pianos and over 70 of them are from famous brand from all over the world. All the pianos are more than 100 years old. The collector of these pianos, Hu Youyi, lives in Australia now. As per the agreement made between the district government of Gulangyu and Hu Youyi, the pianos would be kept on display for ten years at the museum and would be then donated to the government.
The Piano Island
The island itself is known as the piano island since the 20,000 residents of the island own an impressive 620 pianos amongst them. With a specific few pianos, there would be ad-libbing every 30 minutes. Visiting the piano museum will allow you to enjoy the charming piano music created by these ancient and impressive pianos. Other than the impressive piano collection at the museum, visitors will also find quite a lot of old, interesting barrel organs.
The gems in this collection includes a piano which is gold plated, a hand powered antique organ, an 8 pedal ancient piano, a hand powered antique piano, a four corner piano which is the oldest in the world, an ancient 8 pedal piano an auto performing pedal piano and much more. Conductors and famous pianists from all over the world have visited the museum. The first two halls of the museum opened their doors in the year 2000 and included the oldest piano in the collection. This piano was created by Muzio Clementi in the year 1801. Only very few pianos in the world are actually crafted by pianists so it is quite a rare piece.
The Gulangyu Island literally means the Drum Wave Island. However, despite its name, the island is always known as the Piano Islet due to this stunning museum.