You’re invited to an evening of science in the style of the great panel shows (think Good News Week and Spicks and Specks!), as BrisScience takes a lighter look at the top science stories of 2014 and the scientists behind them. It’s science as you’ve never seen it before, with this year’s panellists including world leading researchers, gifted comedians, and professional science communicators – all with a flair for the dramatic. Hosted by well-known figure of stage and science, Dr Joel Gilmore, you’ll be guaranteed a night of entertainment, competition and comedy – and perhaps even education!
Following the success of the 2014 The Storytelling of Science, featuring Tim Flannery and other guests, and the inaugural 2013 Science Comedy Debate, this is sure to be another sold out evening, so secure your tickets early!
Meet our panelists, competing for scientific glory:
Dan Beeston first treaded the boards at the Sit Down Comedy club in 1998. Since then he’s worked as a improvisational performer in comedy clubs all over Brisbane as well as in Canberra, Melbourne, Adelaide and most recently at the Enmore Theatre in Sydney. He works as a character host in everything from tiny seedy bars as well as grand theatres such as the Tivoli theatre and the Powerhouse. Dan is a keen science advocate and is currently a co-host of Smart Enough To Know Better – A Podcast of Science Comedy and Ignorance.
A/Prof Tamara Davis was raised on a Sydney beach, where she learned that the forces of nature powering the waves are often stronger than the swimmers immersed in them, especially when the swimmers were tourists wearing jeans. After watching the space shuttle Challenger explode when she was a small child, she decided she wanted to be an astronaut – which probably reveals more about her personality than you want to know – but discovering that she was deficient in appropriate citizenship for a career in space, she settled for the next best thing and has spent her career studying it.
Dr Melanie McKenzie led a previous life as a physicist and engineer. She is now a science communication professional and academic who is interested in the features of good and bad science communication. As a freelance science communication consultant, Melanie writes for a variety of science related publications, runs presentation and media skills workshops for scientists, and designs and performs evaluations of science communication activities. Melanie is passionate about exploring, teaching, and supporting better ways for people to engage with science.
Dr Andrew Stephenson has been working as Science Communicator at The University of Queensland since 2009. In addition to organising BrisScience Andrew runs the Science Demo Troupe, and each year personally runs hundreds of science demonstration shows and workshops for thousands of students all over Queensland. Through his outreach, Andrew has shared his enthusiasm for science with kids in every corner of the state, and even took liquid nitrogen to the Simpson Desert. Andrew has helped produce several science-based television shows for the ABC, Discovery, and Channel 7.
Greg Wah has been performing in comedy shows for over 15 years, in Brisbane and around the world. There is only one thing he enjoys more than hearing the audience be amused and that is an audience having the ‘light bulb’ moment when they ‘get it’. He has been a science communicator in one form or another for many years and is one of the creators and co-hosts of the popular Australian podcast Smart Enough To Know Better. Hilariously, he is bringing a knife to a gunfight by hoping to utilise his still in progress Masters against the PhDs arrayed against him.
Prof Andrew White enjoys communicating the weirdness of quantum mechanics while making sure people know just how much fun science really is. Over the years Andrew has conducted research on various topics including shrimp eyes, nuclear physics, optical vortices, and quantum computers. He likes quantum weirdness for its own sake, but his current research aims to explore and exploit the full range of quantum behaviours—notably entanglement—with an eye to engineering new technologies and scientific applications. Andrew is a lead researcher in not one, but two ARC Centres of Excellence.
And introducing our host for the evening:
Dr Joel Gilmore is a physicist, engineer, science communicator and entertainer – sometimes all at once. By day, he leads the Climate Policy team at ROAM Consulting and helps to transition Australia to a low emissions future. By night, he is involved in diverse events, ranging from public lectures on food science to stand-up comedy and theatre sports to television appearances, including on Catalyst and former kids’ show, The Shak. Well known for his enthusiastic approach to sharing his love of science, tonight he will be drawing together his many passions for an entertaining evening!