Music and Science: Stop Right There

In this Feature, we image what a conversation between Freddie Mercury and his producer might have been like, if his producer had been a massive science nerd and wanted to correct Freddie’s ‘alternative facts’.

MONOPOLES: an exhibition about art and physics

Space and time bend. Intuition falters. What do we really know? Monopoles is a weekend of exhibitions, talks and performances featuring cutting edge physics alongside award-winning art, film, poetry and music. Monopoles brings the search for the magnetic monopole at the Large Hadron Collider (CERN) into a Bermondsey art space. The weekend will open with […]

Space Spectacular at the Royal Albert Hall

A voyage through a galaxy of favourite music from deep space and beyond, with lights, lasers and fireworks. Including works by Holst, Strauss and John Williams – perhaps the greatest film composer of all time and winner of over 40 prestigious awards, including 5 Oscars. Over the decades their music has accompanied us on epic […]

Why Music? ‘Round up

With the help of the audience, presenters Tom Service and Sarah Walker and ‘Why Music?’ resident experts Victoria Williamson and Philip Ball look back over the weekend and discuss its highlights and discoveries. Speakers and performers Tom Service, broadcaster and author Sarah Walker, musician, writer and broadcaster Victoria Williamson, Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow for Music at the […]

Why Music? The Descent of Language

According to Darwin, the origins of verbal communication lie in a musical ‘protolanguage’, in which speech and song were one. The Descent of Language is a playful exploration of this ancestry and the unexpected ways it is revealed in everyday experience. Performed by vocal ensemble The Clerks and including audience participation, the programme features new […]

Why Music? Sounds of Nature

Chris Watson is one of the world’s most celebrated wildlife sound recordists. Using both his own surround sound field recordings and commercially recorded music, Chris – himself a composer – demonstrates connections between the sounds of the natural world and human music making. Presented by Andrew McGregor, in conversation with Chris Watson. Speakers and performers […]

Why Music? Music and Memory

Music psychologist Victoria Williamson is joined by principle players of Aurora Orchestra for a concert and talk showing how music and memory are linked in extraordinary ways, from before birth to the dementia of old age. Melody, emotion, expectation and meaning are explored through the chamber music of Beethoven, Franck, Stravinsky and Brahms. Speakers and […]

Why Music? The Tingle Factor

Andrew McGregor is joined by psychologist Lauren Stewart and composer and pianist Neil Brand to explore the neurological basis of emotion in music. Both performer and listener experience acute moments of peak emotion through music – ‘the tingle factor’. How is it that music, and music alone, can elicit these feelings? Includes live musical demonstrations. […]

Why Music? Hear and Now

Tom Service presents a programme featuring soloists from the Aurora Orchestra, including world premieres from three young composers on the BBC Proms Inspire scheme and a work written specially for ‘Why Music?’ by New Zealander Antonia Barnett-McIntosh, inspired by the theme of rest and busy-ness. The programme also includes Anna Meredith’s ‘Chorale’ for MRI scanner […]

Why Music? Jazz Line-up

Julian Joseph presents a programme featuring musicians interacting with technology and finds out how well synthetically produced music and improvisation melds with human music making. With live performance from Finn Peters (flute and sax), Oren Marshall (tuba) and Matthew Yee-King (electronics), plus a solo set from pianist Neil Cowley. Speakers and performers Julian Joseph, presenter […]

Why Music? Music Question Time

Tom Service and ‘Why Music?’ resident experts Victoria Williamson and Philip Ball draw together some of the big themes of the weekend so far, as well as attempting to answer questions from listeners and the audience. Speakers and performers Tom Service, Radio 3 presenter and author Victoria Williamson, Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow for Music at the University […]

Why Music? The Psychiatrist at the Keyboard

Psychiatrist and concert pianist Dr Richard Kogan is renowned for his recital-lectures showing how some composers’ mental illnesses influenced and shaped their music. In his first public appearance in the UK, his ‘clients’ include composers from Beethoven to Gershwin – and perhaps the most troubled of all, Robert Schumann. Speaker and performer Richard Kogan, Clinical […]

Why Music? Playing with Patterns

How and why have composers through the centuries striven to imbue their music with the patterns and mathematics of the natural world? With the help of principle players of Aurora Orchestra, Marcus du Sautoy attempts some answers. Including music by Bach, Mozart, Messiaen and Berg. Speakers and performers Marcus du Sautoy, Charles Simonyi Professor for […]

Why Music?: Shaping the Brain

Claudia Hammond talks to Professor David Hargreaves about the ways in which music can influence the brain from a neurological perspective: our musical tastes, education and preferences shape more than just our social lives. Speakers David Hargreaves, Professor of Education, University of Roehampton Claudia Hammond, broadcaster. This event is FREE. Tickets will become available below […]

Why Music?: In Tune

In Radio 3’s popular ‘Drivetime’ show the irrepressible Sean Rafferty asks ‘Why Music?’ with a lively mix of performance and discussion, plus guests including pianists James Rhodes and Derek Paravicini, conductor John Lubbock, and music psychologist Victoria Williamson. Speakers and performers James Rhodes, pianist Derek Paravicini, pianist John Lubbock, conductor Adam Ockelford, Professor of Music, […]

Universe of Sound: The Planets

Universe of Sound: The Planets The Science Museum 10am-6pm daily from 23 May – 8 July 2012. Entrance is FREE. Have you ever wondered what it would feel like to be part of a 132 piece Orchestra? For 6 weeks this summer you can find out… The Science Museum and the Philharmonia Orchestra have teamed up […]

Secret Scientist: Mark Mann

Technologist at BBC R&D The BBC R&D Department is the core of the corporation’s effort to be at the cutting edge of media technology, and drives the exploration of exciting new tools for the production and distribution of programming. In his role as a technologist, Mark Mann has drawn on scientific expertise in developing innovative […]

Podcast: Autotune the Abstract

As a science communication student I find myself constantly coming across new and different ways people try and get across scientific data and knowledge. It can range from typical things such as news articles and blog posts to knitted representations of science. Whilst some of the crazy ways people try and get out their research may […]

Music Makes You Lose Control

It is starting to get colder. Dark clouds are rolling in over London and our coats and umbrellas are already back in action. It must be the festival season. Over the next few months, hundreds of thousands of people will flock to the British countryside for a few days of hedonistic revelry and copious amounts […]

Genetically characterising the willingness to listen to music

In the run up to the release of I, Science’s Spring 2011 issue on the 11th March, you must excuse me for my lack of blog posts in the past fortnight. Andrew and I have trawled through the pages of the latest issue. After a final round of checks and corrections, we finally sent it […]