The Matter of Origins Evaluation Findings

Thursday, September 1, 2011
Resource Type:
Evaluation Reports | Reference Materials | Report
Environment Type: 
Public Programs, Theater Programs
General Public | Museum/ISE Professionals | Scientists
Art, music, and theater | Physics
The Dance Exchange, Michigan State University, Dance Exchange

Choreographed by Liz Lerman and the Dance Exchange, The Matter of Origins is a contemporary dance exploring historical perspectives and cutting edge physics about our beginnings. In Act One, audience members watch as science concepts are translated into images, music, and dance. Dancers portray ideas such as the complexity of measurement, the ways atomic particles interact, and the origins of the universe. Science-themed, multi-media experiences including images from the Hubble space telescope, CERN, and replications of atomic bomb explosions accompany the dancing. In Act Two, audience members adjourn to a nearby room to enjoy tea, cake, and dialogue facilitated by local scientists and scholars. The tea experience includes dance interruptions and additional science content, to stimulate reflection through public engagement about the nature of science, limits of measurement, and meaning of movements, both big and small. The National Science Foundation (NSF) funded the presentation of tea and the evaluation of The Matter of Origins as an informal science education project. NSF’s main learning impacts for informal science education include individual changes in attitude, interest, knowledge, behavior, and skills related to science.


Associated Projects

Team Members

Liz LermanLiz LermanPrincipal Investigator
Diane DoberneckDiane DoberneckEvaluator
John SchweitzerJohn SchweitzerEvaluator
Paula MillerPaula MillerEvaluator
John BorstelJohn BorstelEvaluator

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