Hudba a Pohádka Music and Fairy Tale exhibit at the Czech Music Museum is full of mystic wonder, child-friendly interactions, and a graphical error.
The Music and Fairy tale exhibit has you enter into a small cottage-esque facade and each section of the exhibit makes you feel like you’ve jumped into a fairy tale, with costumes, props and music to support the experience—and it’s interactive!
Fairy tales are a universal concept with overarching themes that transform differently in each culture. Everyone has a fairytale that they remember from their childhood, even through Czech culture, so the stories cherished from our younger years are depicted in some variation in this exhibit. Visitors will recognize the vague concepts of the fairy tales, but each room in the exhibit is specific to Czech culture. This magic and wonder has inspired artists and composers, like Antonin Dvorak. Through the exhibit, visitors will learn about the background of each fairy tale and the Czechs’ artistic exploration of them as well.
Theatrical performances were a popular exploration and artistic expression of fairy tales in the 19th and 20th centuries. This is reflected in the original costumes of different periods, set designs, and musical scores that were composed and can be listened to throughout the exhibit.
Some highlights of this exhibit include walking through the tunnel of dragons and exploring the hall of princesses. For the younger participants, there is a makeshift tree house and a dress-up corner. The exhibit has many touch points where children have the chance to interact with what they’re seeing. These tactile opportunities will keep children entertained and make them excited about learning the history behind the Czech fairy tales.
There are mistakes though. On a wall towards the end of the exhibit there is an illustrated graphic that shows a french horn labeled in both English and Czech; “this is an oboe”. While the exhibit is filled with educational aspects, particularly aimed towards children, a french horn does not look like an oboe!
In every fairy tale scene there is the opportunity to touch and interact with different aspects of the exhibit. You can play a thumb piano, listen to a musical score at different tempos, or peek through keyholes to learn more about historical theatrical performances.
Ignite the child inside you, or bring your own children to view, listen, and touch your way through Czech fairy tales through music. The universal theme of fairy tales makes this exhibit accessible to even those who may not be familiar with Czech language or culture, everyone can enjoy.
Beyond the Fairy Tales the Czech Museum of Music offers much more for the instrumental enthusiast. While you’re visiting, be sure to check out the permanent exhibit on the historical development of musical instruments. See how the piano, a vast variety of wind and string instruments and more evolved into what we’d recognize today.
- Karmelitská 2/4,
- 118 00 Praha 1
- Open Wednesday through Monday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Closed Tuesdays.
Photo courtesy of Emma Katz