Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Manchester Science Festival: Spacetacular – participants needed!

Spacetacular! is quite possibly the first stand-up comedy/science/fancy dress/variety/quiz show entirely themed around outer space!

We’re looking for participants for this event at Manchester Science Festival that blends comedy, science and stories about space. The event will be held on Friday 28 October at MOSI (Museum of Science and Industry) for an adult audience.

Hosted by Helen Keen (creator of BBC Radio 4’s space comedy hit It Is Rocket Science) and finishing with a prize quiz by Londonist Editor & all round space nerd Matt Brown, previous sell out shows in London & Edinburgh have featured both comedians and scientists (& people who are just plain enthusiastic) talking to a friendly tinfoil-clad audience about their love of space.

The aim of the show is to celebrate the cosmos as widely and inclusively as possible - and in a fun way. So we’re looking for a people who would like to talk for 5-10 minutes about what they love most about space. Topics can be as broad as you like, as long as they’re vaguely space-y/science fiction-y.

We’ve previously had Prof Andrew Jaffe talking about space telescopes & Sheila Kanani of UCL making a comet in a bucket, as well as writer and Wired journalist Leila Johnston talking about her worries about Star Trek.

We encourage the audience to dress up (and have costume-making tinfoil & silvery things at the door…) and to keep things as inclusive as possible, we also have audience 'open spots' in the final section when anyone can bring a space related object (last time: a tattoo, a NASA space camp medal + a bit that had 'dropped off' a satellite...) and talk about their own enthusiasm for the Universe... (seems appropriate as space science and astronomy are of course areas where enthusiasts and amateurs can make quite a big contribution!).

If taking to the stage isn’t your thing, we’re also looking for space-related scientists to bring some objects, demonstrations or hands-on activities to engage the audience prior to the show. Doors will open at about 6pm for the audience to grab a drink, enjoy the planetarium and talk to scientists about space, before the show begins at about 7.30pm.
• If you’re interested in a stage slot, please email by Thursday 1 September with a brief overview of what you do and what you’d like to talk about.

• If you’d like to participate the hands-on drop in part of the night please email by Thursday 1 September with a brief overview of what you do, what you’d like to do on the evening and the topic. If you’re participating in MOSI’s day time programme and would like to stay on for the evening, that would be great and we’ll shout you some dinner!

• Please also tell us if you have had previous experience of engaging with the public.