As part of its public service activities to promote appreciation for music culture, the Min-On Music Museum periodically holds cultural lectures and workshops. Since it was officially registered as an authenticated music museum in 2003, some twenty cultural lectures and a number of workshops have been held, mainly in the Min-On Culture Center but also sometimes in public places.
In one example of a cultural lecture from 2006, Wu Jiang, President of the China National Peking Opera Company, gave a talk entitled The World of Peking Opera on the occasion of the company’s Japan tour. Explaining the enormous influence that Peking Opera has had on the Chinese people, he characterized it as an encyclopedia for understanding all facets of China’s history and culture. In addition to the lecture, participants were treated to a performance by the Peking Opera actors. In another example, Japanese conductor Tadaaki Otaka delivered a lecture entitled Classical Music from the Standpoint of a Conductor. The talk focused on the fascination of classical music, and was followed by a lively question-and-answer session. Through the lecture, the approximately 250 attendees deepened their understanding of and appreciation for classical music.
Various workshops have been held periodically at the Min-On Culture Center’s Museum Hall. Among them, the “Music Experience Workshop” for parents and children involving hand-made musical instruments has proved very popular and has been held annually as a public service activity of the Music Museum. With the goal of inspiring children’s talent and wisdom, and deepening family ties, some 200 parents and children take part in each event. The workshops are conducted by professional musicians, who demonstrate how to make musical instruments out of familiar daily objects—for example, a recorder, complete with finger-holes, fashioned from a hollowed-out carrot, or a drum made by stretching tape over a bucket. The children expressed surprise and delight as each creation was produced.
“Introduction to Tango” was another popular workshop, held in 2005, with more than 200 people of all ages and backgrounds participating. The workshop, whose aim was to build interest in Tango among the Japanese public, began with a video introducing the history of Tango and its variations. After that, over the course of the one-hour lesson, the instructors, who themselves had won the Buenos Aires Tango World Championship, helped all participants master the basic steps. Finally, the couple delivered a breathtaking performance to thunderous applause. Similar workshops were held in other cities during the Japan tour of the annual Min-On Tango Series.