School science lessons were never this much fun

Explosions, mucking about with liquid nitrogen, a hovercraft built out of plywood and a leaf-blower; my most exciting science lesson was when an idiot spilt diluted acid over my, I mean his, hand.

Ahem, anyway, Science Museum Live, at Ipswich’s Regent Theatre on February 21-22, is not your average science lesson.

“The show’s packed full of lots of different science experiments; mayhem and some things the audience can even go away and try at home,” says Mike Gobel of Explosive Entertainments, who co-presents the show with Emma Blackwell.

“It’s partly to show how great the London Science Museum is, but not everyone can get there. So it’s great to take a few best bits to hopefully get the kids interested in science as well.

“If anyone wants to look into [what they see] in more detail they can either have a look online or hopefully go to the museum. Some people forget it’s free to go in and there are always new exhibitions, like from February half-term the capsule that brought up the Chilean miners is in the museum.”


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While aimed at the seven to 12-year-old bracket, there’s plenty for adults to enjoy.

“We did a show last night and it was absolutely packed and what’s great is looking out you see lots of families there; it’s actually one of the theatre events even the dads will come along to.”

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With spectacular science, dangerous demonstrations, extraordinary experiments, interactive sets and digital projections interspersed with webcam footage from inside the Science Museum as well as exclusive footage of some of the nation’s scientific treasures stored at Wroughton in Wiltshire and Blythe House in Kensington I’m not surprised.

“For a few experiments we get children up [on stage]. We actually piece together a hovercraft on stage with a leaf blower and plywood. We have a pilot’s chair and one of the kids comes out the audience to help us put it together. Then this hovercraft is going round the stage with them sat on it.”

Audience participation is a big part of the show. You also get to see just how explosive a few gases are and the start resembles the game Mousetrap; you know where one thing hits another that spins the next and so on.

“Throughout the show we’re looking at different types of energy; it’s all around - heat, light, sound, kinetic,” adds Mike. “When you reel off a list it sounds boring. Then when you actually see it happening...”

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