EMP Museum: Why You Should Go and How to Get Ticket Discounts

A Top Music and Sci-fi Destination in Seattle Center

Aerial view of the Experience Music Project, EMP, music museum of the grounds of the Seattle Center, Seattle, WA
George White Location Photography / Getty Images

The EMP Museum in Seattle was originally known as the Experience Music Project with the separate Science Fiction Museum attached. Now, the two museums are united under one title - EMP Museum - and one admission fee. The museum houses both permanent and temporary exhibitions, focusing on music history and sci-fi, as well as several interactive exhibits.

There is no better place for music lovers to get up close and personal with memorabilia from some amazing bands. There’s also no better place for nerds and geeks alike to indulge in some very cool pieces of sci-fi TV and movie history.

Located centrally on the edge of Seattle Center, EMP is close to lots of other things to do and see in Seattle Center and downtown Seattle. It's also one of the attractions featured in the Seattle CityPASS, so if you're planning to do more than one attraction, this is the perfect way to save on tickets overall.

But because this is one of Seattle's major attractions, the cost isn't cheap. If you're thinking about going, read on for highlights of visiting as well as ways to save on ticket costs.

Death From Above 1979 Perform An EndSession Hosted By 107.7 The End
Mat Hayward / Getty Images

Exhibits and Events

EMP Museum exhibits rotate often enough that repeat visits are likely to yield new experiences. What you can count on seeing on any visit are exhibits showcasing musicians and science fiction shows and movies. Past exhibits have included several about Jimi Hendrix, as well as everyone from Jim Henson to Michael Jackson.

The Guitar Gallery is a permanent exhibit detailing the history of guitars from the 1700s to the present. The museum also has a very cool and very large spiral sculpture inside.

The science fiction wing of the building (home of the formerly separate entity that was the Science Fiction Museum) now houses a collection of sci-fi memorabilia, the Science Fiction Hall of Fame, and usually a special exhibit. Past exhibits have included Battlestar Gallatica, Alien Encounters, and Robots: A Designer’s Collection of Miniature Mechanical Models. This museum is, in every way possible, a sci-fi nerd's paradise.

The interactive exhibits are part of what make the EMP Museum so unique and fun to visit, as well as a great place for budding musicians. In the Sound Lab, you can actually record your own music in a private booth. Don’t know how to play? No worries. Computers teach you how to play a bit of guitar and keyboards so you can put something together. Another interactive exhibit, On Stage, allows anyone to be a rock star on stage with lights, smoke effects and fans!

The EMP Museum hosts a few annual events, including the Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival (a film festival organized by EMP and the Seattle International Film Festival); Sound Off! (a 21-and-under battle of the bands); Hall Pass (a program designed to help teens meet artists, musicians, and creative professionals); and Oral History Program, which interviews musicians, authors, and other creative professionals. EMP is also home to one of the largest New Year's parties in town.

EMP Seattle Coupons and Discounts

EMP Museum admission is not cheap. Even though the admission fee is worth it for most people who visit and love what EMP has to offer, saving a bit of money is always a good thing. There are a number of ways to get discounted admission.

A limited number of free passes are available through the Seattle Public Library. You'll need to reserve your pass online in advance, usually for a specific date, but you can't beat free.

If you're a teen, there are discounts for teens ages 13-19 through the TeenTix.

Buy in-advance online for a discount of $3-5 (the discount comes up after you click into the Buy Tickets screen).

Use a CityPASS. This pass gets you into six of Seattle attractions for one price, and comes out cheaper per site than buying individual tickets.

If you buy a museum membership, admission is free.

Look in Seattle TourSavers books or other local coupon books.

Children under 4 are free. Children 5-17 get a few dollars off admission.

Students and Military with ID get a few dollars off admission.

Seattle Center and Space Needle
Artie Photography (Artie Ng)/Getty Images

EMP Museum Address

EMP Museum
325 5th Avenue N
Seattle, WA 98109

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