Wednesday, January 10, 2018

MIM (part one)

The Anaheim game in Phoenix wasn't until 8 p.m., so we had an entire day to fill.

I didn't want to do much. I have very low ambitions on hockey trips--sleep, eat, get to the rink on time. So I looked on Google Maps and strategically found a museum only a mile from our hotel.

That felt like a win.

I had ultra-low expectations for the Musical Instrument Museum, and I've never been more surprised, because it was exceptional.

This is a stary harp (click to enlarge--it's beautiful):

From here on, I have descriptions of everything. Here's the description of the next photo:
Designed by Swedish immigrant Henry Konrad Sandell, the Violano Virtuoso is a coin-operated mechanical violin and piano...Various models of the violano were in production from 1905 to 1930, and they were popular in cafes, bars and ice cream parlors.

Ever wonder how they manufactured piano rolls?
A skilled arranger first punches a master roll on an Arranging Piano.

Each piano key triggers it's corresponding punch in teh attached Primary Master Perforator. The arranger presses the desired keys and then a foot pedal to advance the master roll, one punch-row at a time.

Note: there's a piano attached for the Arranging Piano to work, but it's not in this photo.

Beginning in the 1870s, player trumpets like this were sold in the United States as "phonographic cornets" and "trumpettos".

Since I love lutes in games (and really love playing a bard), I was on lute lookout. This is a Pipa, a plucked lute from China.

As elite warriors, artists, and intellectuals, samurai embodied Japan's spirituality and culture. Yet during the seventeenth century, under the rule of military governors known as the shogunate, samurai gradually lost their military function and found themselves without purpose. 

Unable to fight, many former samurai became wandering komusō monks. Members of the Fuke sect of Zen Buddhism, komusō  were "priests of emptiness and nothingness." 

While playing shakuhachi, komusō  wore large, woven baskets called tengai over their heads to symbolize their detachment from the modern world.

The museum has so many different exhibits (most of them arranged geographically), that what you might see in a fifteen second span will make your head spin.

Shark rattle
Palau, 2008
Coconut shells, bamboo, rubber

The coconut shells vibrate when pulled through the water, attracting sharks who mistake the sound for a school of fish surfacing. 

More tomorrow.

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