Saturday, 25 April 2015

Museum of Technology in Warsaw - part 2: Music

The horses are not only used to travel or work. We also bring leisure. This is also the case for the technology - it is not only created for travelling and working. It also serves leisure. Museum of Technology in Warsaw, apart from cars, offers exhibitions on many other topics and among them we have chosen the musical machines. They were created to have fun for the ones that, as me, cannot play or sing as good as they would like to.

100 years ago the cheapest way to listen to the music was to give a coin to an organ grinder.

In the museum I have learnt that their sound was created by pipes, just like in the typical church organs. The selection of tones was done with use of a pinned cylinder.

Such cylinders, obviously of different sizes, were used in other types of musical automates, like music boxes.

But here, as you can see, the sound was created by a metal comb. No, the comb was not multipurpose, the musician could use it for his hair.

The cylinders were also used for typical Western saloon automated pianos.

 But the most impressive music machine of the museum is the orchestrion.

 As always the most interesting part is hidden and one must open the door to see it.

Yes, you are correct. There are many instruments inside, apart from a piano you can see a musical triangle, a drum and a cymbal. All of them connected to the cylinder and automated.

But as with the cars, to let musical machines enter all houses, the technology needed to make a big step. Step to the disc.

The first ones were made of metal.

The second generation was made of cardboard.

And this way we came to the almost contemporary gramophones, tapes and CDs.

The best thing about the Museum of Technology in Warsaw is that you can not only see these machines but also listen to all of them. As an example I propose that we listen to the Polish national anthem. Played by a music box of course.


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