The music museum of the city of Halle was established in the birthplace of George Frideric Handel during the years 1937-1948. Three key collections and activities define the core activites of the museum: George Frideric Handel, the musical history of the region, and historical musical instruments. These are represented in the three permanent exhibitions:
In the Handel exhibition, expanded to 12 rooms, visitors can retrace the path of Handel's life, gain insights into his social environment, his compositional work and the reception of his music up to the present.
The musical instrument collection was set up in connection with the founding concepton of the museum, in which research, editing, performing and teaching were to take place, as the basis for the development and fostering of an authentic performance practice. Today it includes approximately 700 instruments and operates far beyond the original definition of its task.
An active schedule of concerts, the high point of which is the annual Handel festivals, is among the museum’s activities.
Germany possesses musical traditions and legacies of extraordinary value: Handel, Schuetz and Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms, and Wagner - to mention only a few names - are composers who are known and treasured throughout the world. Their work has played a significant role in shaping a unique musical landscape.
Numerous orchestras, choruses, ensembles, renowned music festivals and series, music houses with museums, public archives and libraries, but also private collections preserve their musical heritage.
It is necessary to revitalize this inestimable fund again and again and to develop it for the present. At the same time, an important role befits the houses combined in the consortium of music museums of Germany. In them we encounter the work of the musicians and composers who have extraordinarily enriched the cultural nation of Germany. However, beyond the individual portrait, beyond the procurement of individual oeuvres, the music museums also contribute overall to the maintenance of musical tradition. The present brochure underscores this aspect of the synoptic presentation and invites the reader on a journey into the musical history of Germany. I hope this tour guide will be actively used and receive a large response.Bernd Neumann, Member of the Lower House of the German Parliament
Minister of State with the Federal Chancellor
Commissioner of the Federal Government for Culture and Media
Quoted from: Foreword to the brochure "Music Museums in Germany", 2007.