By Andrew Little
Space geeks ran amok in the Museum of Science and Industry on Friday night as the space-tacular live show Out of this World came to Manchester.
The tone for the evening was set on arrival to the museum, as beaming science festival staff sporting drooping antennas handed out rolls of tin foil and tubs of stars and glitter for guests to ‘spacify’ themselves with. (If you’re interested, your MM reporter opted for an understated tin foil bow tie and a sporadic smattering of stars and glitter).
Hosted by the brilliant and adorable comedienne Helen Keen; the evening juggled fun (bordering on ridiculous) variety show performances with cutting edge science talks and demonstrations from local scientists, all based around the theme of outer space.
Helen said: “It was a great pleasure to be back at Manchester Science Festival again for a third year, and to be doing a show in such great surroundings.
“It was wonderful and a privilege to be able to introduce so many researchers, scientists and science communicators – most of whom were from or working in the local area.”
From secret space missions to Star Wars: from multiverses to stand up comedy: from the aurora borealis in a box to a pub quiz; the whole evening couldn’t fail to entertain and inspire.
The evening finished in spectacular fashion, with planetary scientist, Sheila Kanani, telling the audience that they are actually all aliens before proceeding to make a comet in a plastic bucket, using a packet of crisps, a glug of beer and a whole load of dry ice.
An unexpected highlight of the evening was the audience fancy dress competition, mainly because of the creativity and effort which people had put into their costumes.
Helen said she was “bowled over and delighted by how imaginative and adventurers they’d been.”
Queuing at a bar in a museum lobby with Buzz Lightyear and a lady dressed in a full astronaut suit was a social experience nothing quite prepares you for.
The evening was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone present and proved a fantastic end to MM’s Manchester Science Festival.