Museums at Night 2010: Become a rock and roll star at the British Music Experience

By Culture24 Staff | 13 April 2010
A photo of the shadow of a person wearing headphones looking at an interactive display of pop music

Museums at Night 2010: Open Mic Jam Session, British Music Experience, London, May 14 2010

Of all the Museums at Night venues who can claim to attract a varied audience, the British Music Experience at the O2 has one of the broadest pulls.

Covering everything from post-war parping to Adam Ant and Amy Winehouse, the 22,000 square feet show holds memorabilia donated by a who’s who of pop stars persuaded by the £9.5 million attraction.

Now the Experience is daring visitors to become the centre of attention for one night only, opening until 11pm as wannabe rock and roll stars join the house band for a trip through the decades.

A photo of people playing instruments outside a sound booth in a museum

A house band will be on hand for the Open Mic night at the Experience

"This is the first time we are hosting a night like this at the Museum," says Education Officer Neysela de Silva, hoping it will tempt "budding musicians and music fans alike."

"The Open Mic night will involve some improvised jamming by the British Music Experience house band, a set list of songs that will feature the band and members of the public who know how to play that song, as well as an opportunity for visitors to perform their own material.

"We would think that the guitars and drums will be the most popular instruments due to many of the participants being in bands."

A photo of people looking at exhibits to do with pop music inside a museum

The vast display is well worth a look when you're not on stage, enjoying extended opening hours until 11pm for Museums at Night

Attendees overwhelmed by the weight of history around them might prefer to head to the Gibson Interactive Studio, where the instruments remain silent to everyone except their player, but the emphasis of this debut experiment is firmly on encouraging everyone to take to the stage.

"There is of course the possibility that people will have different levels of ability and experience," acknowledges de Silva.

"That's what the night is all about – people coming up and having a go. Booing is strictly prohibited."

Open 6.30pm-11pm. Admission £5.

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