The Story Collider's name is more than just a playful riff on particle physics. Every show produced by the organization involves very real collisions. Collisions between the performers' personal stories and their listeners' emotions. Between the audience's senses—dulled by the daily onslaught of canned digital content—and the raw, risky, unmediated nature of a live, in-person performance. And perhaps most of all, between traditional notions of science as a dispassionate, evidence-driven pursuit and the messy, funny, uncontrollable, very human experiences shared on stage by the show's storytellers, who are often scientists.
Story slams and similar live events have become such an important form of engagement between science, scientists, journalists, and the public that we didn't want to omit the genre from this year's conference. That's why we've been working with Ben Lillie, Ari Daniel Shapiro, Liz Neeley, and the other great folks at The Story Collider to produce a special ScienceWriters2015 edition of the show, at the Oberon Theater in Harvard Square, Cambridge, on Monday night, October 12.
The coolest thing about this performance is that the stars will be you—that is, NASW members and other ScienceWriters2015 participants. The Story Collider has issued an open call for story proposals from conference attendees, and if you brainstorm fast, you still have time to send one in. The deadline is this Friday, September 4. Send a short pitch to email@example.com with "ScienceWriters Pitch" in the subject line.
If you'd rather listen than talk, that's great too—but sign up soon, because we expect the show to sell out, and we're running out of space quickly. Tickets are $15. You can select The Story Collider as an optional activity when you register for ScienceWriters2015.
Some logistical notes: Story Collider attendees will need to make their own way to the Oberon Theater, at 2 Arrow Street in Harvard Square, whether by bus, subway, taxi, bike, or foot. It's a 1.5-mile / 30 minute walk from Kresge Auditorium, the main conference site on October 12, and a 1.7-mile / 35-minute walk from the Hyatt Regency Cambridge, the main conference hotel. One convenient option is to walk to the MBTA bus stop near Massachusetts Ave. and Albany Street and take the #1 bus to Harvard Square (28 minutes, $2.10).
Doors will open at 7:30 pm for the 8:00 pm performance. No separate ticket is required. As long as you signed up in advance, you can just wear your conference name badge and we'll check you off our guest list at the door.
The Oberon is a cabaret-style theater with 170 chairs and stools and standing room for another 15 people. Seating is general admission and will be first come, first serve. There will be a cash bar.
Attendees with disabilities should know that the Oberon is fully accessible. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.