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The Science and Industry Museum announces world first exhibition, Turn It Up: The power of music

  • Turn It Up: the power of music is a major new interactive exhibition premiering at the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester, 21 October 2022 – May 2023 before a national tour 
  • Created by the Science Museum Group, it is a world first exhibition of this scale exploring the science of music’s mysterious hold over us and how it drives us to create, perform, feel and share 
  • Visitors will be able to experiment with sounds in a musical playground, see Haile the AI musical robot who can improvise and perform with musicians on public display for the first time, and discover unusual musical inventions, including MiMU gloves invented by Imogen Heap and used by Ariana Grande 
  • It is the headline exhibition for the bi-annual Manchester Science Festival 
  • Tickets can be pre-booked now via the museum website - £8 adults, £6 child/concessions and family discounts are available 

This autumn the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester is opening a world first immersive exhibition exploring the science of music’s mysterious hold over us and how it drives us to create, perform, feel and share.  

Created by the Science Museum Group, Turn It Up: The power of music is opening on 21 October – premiering at the Science and Industry Museum as the Manchester Science Festival’s headline exhibition, before a national and international tour. 

Through specially commissioned interactive and immersive art installations, personal stories, musical tracks, dance, never-before-seen musical inventions, first-hand accounts from renowned musicians, artwork, cutting-edge research and unique instruments – visitors will discover the science behind music and what the future holds for melody making. 

From why certain music can make us feel different emotions and how it might influence what we buy, to how it can even be used to boost health and wellbeing and to improve sleep – Turn It Up: The power of music shows just how profoundly music can affect our lives with or without us knowing. The exhibition also shows how scientists, innovators and musicians are using technological advancements to push the limits of music making and ensure playing music is more accessible for everyone. 

Curator of Exhibitions at the Science and Industry Museum, Steven Leech, says: “Music is something that is a part of everyone’s lives and unites us all.  

“The space will be alive with music, fully immersing visitors, and bringing to life the mystery of music and the incredible ways that it impacts all aspects of our lives. Through intriguing objects, musical commissions and interactive experiences, including an incredible “musical playground”, discover how technological advancements continue to push the limits of music.”  

Further information is set to be released this Autumn, but highlights from this hands-on exhibition include specially commissioned interactives where visitors of all ages can make their own tunes by playing with music and sounds. Including a light and sound musical playground designed by award-winning artists Amigo and Amigo, where together people can play with beats, melodies and harmonies. As well as the chance to make melodies using building blocks. 

On display for the first time will be Haile the musical robot – a pioneering AI robot that can play music and improvise alongside human musicians, as well as the ground-breaking wearable musical instrument, the MiMU Gloves, which use gestures to control electronic music-making software. Created by world-renown music Imogen Heap, these gloves have been used by Ariana Grande.  

Visitors will also discover unique historic instruments, such as the Pyrophone – an organ powered by flames.  Music technology and devices from renowned musicians, as well as personal stories from the public, will bring to life the role music plays in our daily lives. 

Guest Curator, Dr Emily Scott-Dearing added: “What we’ll show is that music is integral to us as human beings and that through technological advancements it’s not only something that everyone can be a part of, but also the opportunities with music are endless. We want visitors to the exhibition to discover weird and wonderful instruments and have lots of fun getting creative; while also feeling, remembering and reflecting on what music means to them and the lives of others.” 

The exhibition brings together key collections from John Rylands University Library, Anarchestra Foundation, Georgia Institute of Technology, University of London, Cambridge Institute for Music Therapy, University of Glasgow, University of Plymouth, Birkbeck University London, University of York and BEAM Lab University of Manchester. 

In addition to stories, contributions and research from a wide variety of organisations and groups, including: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Northern College of Music, Drake Music, Brighter Sounds, Parkinsons UK, Henshaws, Salford Deaf Children’s Society, Alzheimer’s UK, Brunel University London, Harvard Music Lab, University of Oxford, Lucerne University, English National Opera, Skoog, Place2Be, Manchester Camerata, Goldsmiths University London, Anglia Ruskin University, Keele University and University of Salford. 

Turn It Up: The power of music is the headline exhibition at Manchester Science Festival. Produced by the Science and Industry Museum, the 10-day event will return to the city from Friday 21 – Sunday 30 October. The first details of its packed programme have been announced, including a new cosmic dance experience and a series of interactive events all aimed at exploring what makes us human and asking the question, ‘What does the future hold for humanity?’   

Tickets for the Turn It Up: The power of music exhibition cost £8 adult, £6 child/concession and family discounts are available. Advance tickets can be purchased now through our website or by calling 033 0058 0058. 

To find out more about the Manchester Science Festival and what else will be on the schedule of events throughout the week visit our website.

Ends

About the Science and Industry Museum 

The Science and Industry Museum tells the story of where science met industry and the modern world began. Manchester was one of the first global industrial cities, and its epic rise, decline and resurrection has been echoed in countless other cities around the world. The museum's mission is to inspire all its visitors, including future scientists and inventors, with the story of how ideas can change the world, from the industrial revolution to today and beyond.   

The Science and Industry Museum site is on the site of the Liverpool Road Station terminus of the Liverpool Manchester Railway, the world's first purpose-built passenger railway. Among its internationally significant buildings are the world's oldest surviving passenger railway station and the world’s first railway goods warehouse. In total there are two Grade I listed buildings and four Grade II listed buildings on the site. 

The Science and Industry Museum is part of the Science Museum Group, a family of museums which also includes the Science Museum in London; the National Railway Museum in York and Shildon; and the Science and Media Museum in Bradford. The Science Museum Group is devoted to the history and contemporary practice of science, medicine, technology, industry and media. With five million visitors each year and an unrivalled collection, it is the most significant group of museums of science and innovation worldwide. 

The Science and Industry Museum is currently going through a multi-million-pound restoration programme, meaning some areas remain closed to the public. However, there’s still plenty to do, see and enjoy.  

Notes to Editors

For more information, interviews, and images please contact Rachel Conway, Press & PR Manager on rachel.conway@scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk or 07583 067 937  

Part of the Science Museum Group