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PREVIEW: Manchester Science Festival 2014

Some of the highlights from this year's eleven day festival kicking-off on 23 October

Written by . Published on October 21st 2014.

PREVIEW: Manchester Science Festival 2014

NOW in its eight year, the award-winning Manchester Science Festival kicks off on Thursday 23 October across 40 venues in Greater Manchester, finishing eleven days later on Sunday 2 November.

Exciting experiments, featuring sudden colour changes, chemical clocks, fizzes, whizzes, fireworks, flashes, welding, melding, crashes and bangs, give you a basic introduction to the world of atoms, molecules, solids, liquids and gases.

Celebrating more city-wide collaborations than any of the previous festivals, this year's MSF features a diverse and vast range of internationally acclaimed art and cutting edge science designed to immerse visitors of all ages within the world of science that surrounds every one of us.

Last year alone the festival welcomed crowds nearing 100,000 to over 150 events and exhibitions across Greater Manchester.

3D printer in action3D printer in action

With all the brilliant goings-on at this year's festival it'd be worth making a note of some of the following highlights:

Design Manchester

Design Manchester is an originative ten-day festival in venues across the city, celebrating creativity, collaboration, and inclusivity in the worlds of art, design, film, illustration, animation and photography. The 2014 Festival will take place from 21 to 30 October and feature 10x10 exhibition at Northern Quarter bar Kosmonaut, an Adidas showcase housing 650 pairs of rare and deadstock trainers on Dale Street and the Manchester Print Fair in Spinningfields.

Design Manchester | 21 to 30 Oct | visit www.designmcr.com

3D: Printing The Future

Opening the festival is an exhibition which blends science with art, examining how designers, scientists and artists are using this extraordinary technology to transform ordinary computer data into a huge range of physical objects. Make sure you don't miss the prototype of the radar scanner developed by researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University to detect printed weapons and guns which will be on public display for the very first time.

Museum of Science and Industry | 23 Oct to 2 Nov | 10am – 5pm | Free

In Conversation With Marcus Coates

Internationally acclaimed artist Marcus Coates will be discussing his ground-breaking digital installation The Sounds of Others: A Biophonic Line where he reveals unexpected links between different species. He will also be discussing his long term fascination with vocalisation as a tool to reconsider our relationship with the natural world and how this led to his study of hundreds of animal sounds and the discovery of the minute connections between them. This fascinating talk is free but booking is required through the MSF website, don't miss out...

Museum of Science and Industry | 23 October | 7pm | Free



See science meet theatre in this completely original drama which explores the impact of substance misuse and the strength of recovery. Practising Intensive Care Doctor and theatre-maker, Tuheen Huda, comes together with acclaimed writer Anneliese Mackintosh to produce an unmissable production based on real life testimonies gained from communities in Salford which aims to de-stigmatise the nature of addiction.

The Lowry Theatre | 23 and 24 October | 8pm | £12 

The Flash Bang Show 

Pyrotechnic fans, come on down... An extravaganza of sound and vision that will definitely catch your attention and your enthusiasm. Exciting experiments, featuring sudden colour changes, chemical clocks, fizzes, whizzes, fireworks, flashes, welding, melding, crashes and bangs, give you a basic introduction to the world of atoms, molecules, solids, liquids and gases.  

G51, Chemistry Building, University of Manchester | 25 October | 4pm | £5

If you're hankering after yet more bangs and fizzes, youngsters are being invited to take part in the University of Bolton’s flash and bangs workshop. Get hands on with demonstrations of explosions and fires, reactions between chemicals and explanations into how dust explosions happen. The young scientists will even learn how to make fire from ice, make a jelly baby scream and produce exploding bubbles.

University of Bolton | 27 October and 29 October | 10:30am & 2pm | Free

Flash BangFlash Bang

Marvels of Television

Meet the students and staff at University of Salford’s state of the art digital studios for a fun and illuminating family exhibition. Discover how computers can make you disappear, watch the latest in ultra-high definition 4K TV and observe the fascinating developments of the television from the very first black and white sets to today’s television which offers high definition pictures streamed via the internet.  

MediaCityUK | University of Salford | 25 and 26 October | Free 

Dress of Glass and Flame

Join Helen Story MBE and discover a remarkable piece of artwork that explores the chemistry of glass and flame. Helen Story has captured this alchemic process and kept it alive via a life-size glass dress that has, as its heart, a burning flame. This incredible exhibition is part of a three-way collaboration between the gallery, the Helen Storey Foundation and the Whitworth.

Manchester Art Gallery | 27 October | 10am to 5pm | Free 

The Future is Fracking

Make sure to join former Happy Mondays band member, and aspiring politician, Bez, in a one off debate to discuss the timely subject of fracking. The discovery of shale gas in Lancashire has brought a national debate to Manchester's doorstep and outspoken and passionate anti-fracking lobbyist Bez is sure to add to what will be an intriguing and heated debate. 

Museum of Science and Industry | 28 October | 7pm | Free (booking required)

Bez at a fracking demonstrationBez at a fracking demonstration 

Stargazing With Mark Thompson

Meet TV astronomer, Mark Thompson, as he returns to the Manchester Science Festival to talk all things galactic; from satellites to supernovas. Whether you are a stargazing novice or light years ahead, this event is for anyone interested in the wonders of the night sky and Stargazing Live's Mark Thompson will help you learn the best observational techniques. Who could be a better teacher? Book early so you don't miss out...

International Anthony Burgess Foundation | 1 November | 6:30pm | £6

More information on MSF and full programme of events here.


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