December 7, 2006

David Helfand and David Garland

Wednesday, December 6th @ 7 pm
Union Hall’s "Secret Science Club" Presents: A SPACE ODDITY!
Astronomer (and Earthling) David J. Helfand lectures on:
"Intelligent Life in the Universe??"

"Earth to Space. Earth to Space. Come in please … " So far no one’s answering. But recent advances in astronomy and biology have enhanced the ability of scientists to predict whether—despite the lack of contact—there is intelligent life beyond our own solar system.

Chair of the Department of Astronomy at Columbia University, David J. Helfand peers through a speculative telescope and asks: Are we alone? Or is the universe teeming with extraterrestrials? What kinds of planets might ETs live on? And what are the chances that these space folks are smarter than us Earthlings?

Then ... Blast Off to Art-Pop Planet with David Garland
The host of WNYC’s "Spinning on Air," David Garland rockets out of the broadcasting booth—with a 12-string guitar and a beguiling baritone. Called "a superb, crazily imaginative songwriter" by the Village Voice, Garland croons about cloud formations, birds, damnable dreams, natural history dioramas, love, and loss. Don’t miss this ethereal performance!

--Before and in the ’tweens: Groove to tunes and video inspired by little green men!

--Defy gravity with a "Cosmic-politan"—the Secret Science Club’s Cocktail of the Night.

November 1, 2006

Joseph LeDoux plus music by The Amygdaloids


NYU neuroscientist Joseph LeDoux lectures on Fearful Brains in an Anxious World.
Followed by his band, The Amygdaloids, performing songs of mental disorder.

The Amygdaloids are:
Tyler Volk, Environmental Scientist (Lead Guitar)
Joe LeDoux, Neuroscientist (Guitar)
Nina Galbraith Curley, Psychologist(Bass)
Daniela Schiller, Neuroscientist (Drums)

Joseph LeDoux's 2 popular books are:
LeDoux, J.E. (1996) The Emotional Brain. New York, Simon and Schuster.
LeDoux J.E. (2002) Synaptic Self: How Our Brains Become Who We Are. New York, Viking.

October 4, 2006

Molecular Biologist Lee Silver and Musician Bradford Reed

Wednesday, October 4th @ 7 pm
Union Hall’s “Secret Science Club” Presents: Night of the Chimera

Molecular Biologist Lee Silver lectures on the Mysterious World of Biotechnology

Step into the future. Biologist and Princeton professor, Lee Silver delves into the world of human cloning, embryonic stem cell research, and genetically modified organisms—from dinosaur-like creatures to pigs growing human limbs.

The author of Challenging Nature and Remaking Eden, Silver asks: “Does genetic engineering trespass into hallowed zones where mere mortals dare not tread? Are we headed for some freaky Futurama or Brave New World—and if so, what are we afraid of?” Science, religion, pseudoscience, and politics collide!

Composer Bradford Reed fights and tames a hybrid beast!
The “pencilina” is an electric 10-stringed instrument that arose from the musical mind of Bradford Reed. A cross between the hammer dulcimer, koto, and slide guitar, the pencilina is a true chimera with a whacked-out sonic palette. According to Smithsonian, when Reed plays the pencilina—striking it with sticks, plucking, and bowing—he “sounds like Jimi Hendrix and Buddy Rich playing ‘Dueling Banjos.’” Or Anton Karas meeting Metallica. It’s freaky fantastic.

--Before and in the Tweens: Groove to tunes and video inspired by Deoxyribonucleic Acid!

--Imbibe the Beastly Brew of the Night: the futuristic “Chimera,” a strange blend

The “Secret Science Club” meets the first Wednesday of every month in the basement @ Union Hall, 702 Union St. (at 5th Ave.) in Park Slope, Brooklyn. p: 718.638.4400 Web: Subway: R to Union St.; F to 4th Ave.; Q, 2, 3, 4, 5 to Atlantic

No cover. Just bring your own smart self.