• The Arts

A salute to the lute

Boston’s premiere art museum shares lute music from around the globe.



The music gallery at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts is a truly magical place to see instruments from around the world & over the centuries. You can explore the wide range of the MFA’s gorgeous musical instruments – from wind instruments & keyboards to some less conventional items in the category of “oceanic” treasures. And why not hear some of them, too? Enjoy the unique sounds of the lute from three different cultures: a traditional West African song played on a harp-lute, or kora, from Mali; a South Indian composition on an 18th century lute, or sarasvatî vînâ, and a century-old Japenese piece brought to life on a lute, or shamisen, by Sumie Kaneko, a New York-based Japanese artist expert in these ancient instruments. Not only is the music amazing, but these items are stunning works of art in themselves.

Sheet music pages turned
What does music from a similar instrument in three different countries sound like? Find out!

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