Theatrical Frontiers at Science Fest

February 13, 2019 | By | Reply More

Spotlight on Theatre at the Edinburgh Science Festival

Edinburgh Science Festival is taking its cue from the moon landings of 50 years ago for its 2019 edition, with a series of themes which focus on frontiers of different kinds.

The 31st Edinburgh Science Festival is taking place for a fortnight over the school Easter Holiday and has as strong a focus as ever on events for children in the 262 different shows, exhibitions, discussions and activities taking place from Saturday 6 to Saturday 21 April.

Emma Bodiam from the Science Festival team with this year’s programme in a replica of Neil Armstrong’s space suit. Pic: Ian Georgeson

The main news on the theatre front is Edinburgh Science’s continuing commitment to Science in the Spotlight, the theatre-meets-science section, which returns with another world-premiere, Melody and Sam: Record Breakers, aimed at children aged 5 – 8 years old.

Directed by Caitlin Skinner, it is a tender and hilarious story of friendship and breaking world records, created under the wing of Sarah Gray from Edinburgh-based Scottish Theatre Producers and Imaginate.

There are only six performances of show at the Pleasance, a new venue for the Festival. It’s devised by Skinner with Alice Mary Cooper, Ben Winger and the Science Festival while design is by Mamoru Iriguchi.

Also in the Science in the Spotlight programme is A Multi-sensory Polar Adventure by Flotsam and Jetsam Puppets and Stories with storytelling by Ailie Finlay in which audiences go to the Antarctic, following in the footsteps of Captain Scott and his fellow explorers.

electricity and magnetism

Dr Megaphone Goes Zap! presents hilarious tales about the shocking and attractive histories of electricity and magnetism with stand-up engineer Dr Ian ‘Megaphone’ Johnston, singer-songwriter Alan McClure and long-suffering demonstrator Sandy the Science Boy.

StrongWomen Science. Pic: Circus250

And StrongWomen Science presents circus scientists Aoife and Maria of Circus250 as they reveal the scientific secrets behind their astounding tricks: juggling, fire eating, acrobatics and hula hooping!

Over at Summerhall, Paper Doll Militia will weave together personal testimony, live original music and stunning aerial artistry in the return of EGG, which was a hit during Fringe 2018. It is a highly visual exploration of female fertility, sexuality and choice, following the true story of a woman who gave her eggs to her friend to have a child.

Speaking at the launch of the programme, Amanda Tyndall, Edinburgh Science Festival’s Creative Director said: “With new venues and partners and a programme packed full of events and ideas our Frontiers theme sees us explore the research horizons of everything from the depths of the oceans to the furthest reaches of space and the intricate pathways of the human brain.

“At the heart of all science lies an unquenchable curiosity; a deep urge to explore and explain the unknown and to push the Frontiers of our knowledge about ourselves, the world around us and our place in the wider Universe.

“We know more and more each day, yet the unknown still outweighs the known. It is the desire to redress this balance that sits at the heart of science. And of our 2019 programme.”

Edinburgh Science Festival 2019
Various venues across Edinburgh
Saturday 6 to Saturday 21 April 2019.
Download a pdf of the programme here: https://www.sciencefestival.co.uk/festival.
Full festival programme online here: https://www.sciencefestival.co.uk/whats-on.

Theatre (of various sorts) at the Science Festival

A Multi-Sensory Polar Adventure
Monday 8 April 2019
11am & 2pm: Pentland Room, Pleasance
Come on a multi-sensory polar adventure with storyteller Ailie Finlay from Flotsam and Jetsam Puppets and Stories. We will go to the Antarctic, following in the footsteps of Captain Scott and his fellow explorers. This very interactive storytelling session features plenty of props and lots of joining in! Book here.

Lab of the Ludicrous
Tuesday 9 April 2019
8pm: Cabaret Bar, Pleasance
Stand-up scientist Dr Rob Pyatt returns with an all new tour of the strangest science studies ever conducted! This interactive discussion of bizarre studies will demystify scientific methods and put you at the heart of a research experiment. Expect laughter, conversation, hands-on experiments and Weird Science! Book here.

StrongWomen Science
Wednesday 10 April 2019
2pm: Pleasance Theatre, Pleasance
StrongWomen circus scientists Aoife and Maria reveal the scientific secrets behind their astounding tricks. In a fun, lively and fast-paced performance, find out how jugglers, fire eaters, acrobats and hula hoop artists use science to create their amazing acts. Then have a go at some of the circus science experiments yourself in hands-on post-show activities (limited availability). Book here.

Science Theatre Scratch Night
Wednesday 10 April 2019
6.30pm: Netherbow Theatre, Scottish Storytelling Centre
Part of Science in the Spotlight, a project which brings together the wonder of theatre with the explosive world of science communication. Experience an exciting programme of short scratch performances, showcasing short excerpts of new works which explore a range of themes. A special evening of theatre in the making where you’ll be inspired and intrigued by how science and theatre unite. Book here.

The Chemistry Show
Thursday 11 — Friday 12 April 2019
11am: Auditorium , National Museum of Scotland
Be prepared for bangs, colours, flames, foam and even a song! The vibrant show all about chemistry is back, jam-packed with mostly-educational experiments perfect for quizzical kids who want to know it all. Book here.

Fossil Frontiers
Thursday 11 April 2019
2pm: Pleasance Theatre, Pleasance
Zoologist, presenter and author Jules Howard explores the latest fossil finds in this lively palaeo-packed show. Expect toilet roll timelines, how-to-fossilise-me guidance and free fossil gifts (plus, of course, fossil poo) as Jules delves into what makes this science such an exciting study area. Book here.

Melody and Sam: Record Breakers
Thursday 11 — Saturday 13 April 2019
11am & 1.30pm: Quaker Studio, Pleasance
Sam and Melody want to break a world record. They train every day. They want to be the best, the fastest, the strongest, the largest, the longest – anything so long as they get their names in the big record book. Their official record attempt is just around the corner, when a message brings news that will possibly break up the team forever and take them on a journey across the seas, through the waves and into the deep. Book here.

To Boldly Go: Shoreline of Infinity’s Event Horizon
Thursday 11 April 2019
8pm: Cabaret Bar, Pleasance
A new mix of music, prose, drama, poetry and discussion. We ask whether science fiction can help us respond to the advances in science and technology and guide us to a glorious future or will it lead us to disaster and dystopia? Join in the discussion with a panel including science fiction writer Ken MacLeod and astrophysicist Dr Jarita Holbrook. Book here.

Dr Megaphone Goes Zap!
Friday 12 April 2019
11am & 2pm: Pleasance Theatre, Pleasance
Hilarious tales about the shocking and attractive histories of electricity and magnetism with stand-up engineer Dr Ian ‘Megaphone’ Johnston, singer-songwriter Alan McClure and long suffering demonstrator Sandy the Science Boy. Hear of the discoveries and inventions which created the modern age and the characters – passionate, eccentric and sometimes downright bizarre – who made them. Groan at the jokes, join in the choruses and gawk at the experiments. Book here.

Call of Nature
Friday 12 April 2019
10.30am, 12.30pm & 2.30pm: John Hope Gateway, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
The Institute of Eggsperts needs you and it might get muddy! Join our playful field trip and expert fools to explore the local landscape in search of a rare egg, finding laughter and wonder in the most unexpected places. A playful performance that puts young explorers in the driving seat using character clowning, improvisation, puppetry and adventure. Book here.

EGG by Paper Doll Militia
Friday 12–Sunday 14 April 2019
7.30pm: Demonstration Room, Summerhall
Weaving together personal testimony, live original music and stunning aerial artistry, EGG takes you on a highly visual exploration of female fertility, sexuality and choice, following the true story of a woman who gave her eggs to her friend to have a child. After a sell-out Fringe run in 2018, EGG returns for a limited Science Festival run. Book here.

Sing and Dance in Space and Time with Mr Boom
Sunday 14 April 2019
2pm: Cabaret Bar, Pleasance
Mr Boom – the children’s one-man band – arrives from the Moon in the spaceship Imagination. Travel with him on an amazing musical adventure through time and space in an exciting, animated show that features song, dance and audience participation. Book here.

The Justice Syndicate
Sunday 14 April 2019
11am, 2pm and 5pm: Ochil Room, Pleasance
A top surgeon is accused of a serious crime. Conviction would mean planned operations will not go ahead and the evidence is far from conclusive. Listen to the evidence and make your decision: how will you vote? The Justice Syndicate is a piece of playable theatre putting you in the jury box. Please note this performance contains both discussion of sexual assault and explicit description of consensual sexual activity. Over 18s only. Book here.

ENDS

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