Recent Museum Reviews

“The Carolina Music Museum provides a musical perspective of the south and a tactile presentation of the evolution of the modern piano—a true meeting of the arts and sciences. We got a chance to talk with Dr Strange and explore the wealth of information he has about these instruments. A perfect rainy day activity!” – Kathryn Maxwell

“Such a very wonderful and entertaining museum in downtown Greenville. Amazing pieces a musical instrument history!” – Robert C.

“Absolutely phenomenal. Period. The first thing I’ll say is that this museum is small at the moment compared to the actual size of the building. After all, it has only been open since the Spring. There are only 2 rooms, one on each floor. However, they are both filled with historic grand pianos, harpsichords, and square pianos. Complete with descriptions and histories of each one. One of their grand pianos was reportedly played by Chopin for a few hours, another was unbelievably found in a chicken coop. Each one is beautiful and immaculately restored, but unfortunately not all are in tune. In fact, you can’t play the majority of them (they’re roped off and don’t let them catch you trying! lol). The curator Tom has big plans for this museum in the coming months, which will eventually include string instruments. I can’t wait to see this museum the next time I go down to South Carolina.” Dan C.

“An evening visit for their southern music series. Heard a good local bluegrass band. Next up is Appalachian traditional music, followed by blues and jazz. Music was in a small room filled with antique keyboard instruments. Plan to visit the museum again as it looks to be quite interesting. – Jim McDonnell

“Amazing experience! A must-see and hear for anyone who loves the piano! No where else can you play your way through the baroque, classical, and romantic periods on historic instruments. An incredible opportunity!” – Sharon Black

“The Greenville Art Museum was unexpectedly closed last weekend, so we ended up here. What a gem! You will learn about the history of the piano, and early keyboard instruments. They are beautiful objects from a private collection, and you can listen to recordings played on some of the instruments. My favorites were the spinnet and harpsichords. There is also a schedule of performances, and I hope to attend one at some future date.” – Kathleen Kenny

“What a fantastic place. An amazing array of early pianos and harpsichords. They even let you try a few out. Listening stations are great and include pieces performed on the various instruments.” – Joey Hinton

“Quite the lovely collection! Highly recommend!” – Jeremy Harris

“If you are a composer, music historian, or piano player this collection is a must-visit. Play the very instrument that Schubert composed on. Hear Bach on an original Harpsichord. Every piece in the collection has an accompanying recording and most of the instruments are still tuned and played regularly. Check their website for upcoming concert events and consider supporting this fantastic museum’s preservation of historical music styles.” – Brendan Blowers

“Fantastic array of early keyboard instruments and performance space. Surround yourself with music and mechanical history!” – Edward Wright Norge, VA

“The array of harpsichords, spinnets, and pianos of varying types was fascinating to me. I played one scale on a piano that Chopin played for a gathering of a women’s group in 1786. This is definitely a “not to be missed” museum in Greenville, S.C.” Mary Paetsch

“We were in awe. A must see. What an amazing collection of beautiful 18 and early 19 century pianos, and harpsichords. The instruments are all originals from a diverse variety of manufacturers, many names I have never heard before. The docent, Ann Hicks, was extremely knowledgeable and passionate about this collection. Tom Strange was there as well and as this collection was started by him he was able to provide a plethora of information on the history of each instrument. To be able to understand the difference between the various instruments sound bars are placed strategically for your listening experience. Be sure to ask for a docent tour to better understand why some instruments look similar but were made differently and sound differently as well. We were entranced.” – Jean B. Westchester, PA

“I wanted to send my thanks to all of you for the wonderful museum my wife and I enjoyed on Thursday. It is a spectacular collection of pianos, all in amazing condition. It was a rare treat to be able to see them, hear them, play them, and record. We have shared our experience with numerous friends, who, I am sure, will love coming.” – Jerry Anderson, Bluffton, SC (see the video of Jerry playing the 1825 Schanz here)

“Outstanding piano and harpsichord Museum downtown Greenville in the old Coca Cola building, next to the Upcountry History Museum.  It’s filled with exquisite antique pianos, restored and working.  You can listen to a recording of each instrument at each station and self-guided tours are easy. A calendar of concerts is available, order tickets or buy at the counter.  We especially enjoyed the “Lunch and Listen ” series!” – Cheryl H. Simpsonville, SC

“What a terrific collection of instruments. And what a thrill to sit at that 1848 “Chopin” piano and press a single c-minor chord and let it decay to nothing. I get goosebumps whenever I think of that experience.” – John Nikolatos, San Antonio, TX

“We were with the Greenville Newcomers Club & had a special exclusive tour by the owner/curator with wonderful demonstrations of the harpsichord & piano. Very informative & enjoyable!” – Kay Higgins

“I just love the place and the people nice and they explain everything about the music instruments!” – Angelina Olguin

“Great jazz and live music venue. Plus the museum is open for attendees. Win-win.” – Marv Parker

“This museum is easily one of the best of its kind on this side of the Atlantic. I recently spent an enjoyable couple of hours there, and could easily have stayed the rest of the afternoon. The exhibition layout is well designed and informative, with one floor devoted to harpsichords and grand pianos, with the other devoted to square pianos. Many of the instruments are in very playable condition; in particular, the 1824 Schanz and the 1845 Broadwood once played by Chopin are very rewarding for any student or professional pianist. Tom Strange and his team are very knowledgeable, personable and welcoming; they clearly love what they do. Highly recommended.” – Daniel Paul Horn

“Took my granddaughters for a visit to this wonderful museum. It is small but so enjoyable as we listened to all the beautiful music from these exquisite instruments.” – Sue Hayes Fallin

“Had a great Saturday morning. Learning about pianos and interacting with music lovers.” – Jennifer Paramore

“What a collection!
Nothing quite like it anywhere — so lucky to have it right here in SC!
A beautiful facility in a great location.
Staff was very friendly and knowledgeable.
Will recommend to friends everywhere and will return!” – John Morgan

“I had a private tour of the piano collection and it is amazing. Tom and Debra Strange have lovingly and passionately put this collection together and it will be a highlight for any visitor or resident of Greenville. Especially with live activities it will be a wonderful center for music and the arts in the region!” – Dianne Giovanni

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