Particle physicist sees the funny side of science

Monday 16 April 2018

What do you get when you cross a scientist with a stand-up comic?

Leeds audiences can find out at a free show when particle physicist Dr Sam Gregson introduces them to his revolutionary way to make people laugh while they discover the wonders of science.

The 33-year-old Cambridge graduate is on a mission to make science more accessible and is going back to school to stage his comedy show Ministry of Sense: Hunting the Higgs, on Thursday 26 April at The Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL).

During the show the audience will be in charge of making one of science’s greatest and most exciting discoveries – the Higgs Boson – using their own smartphone or tablet to access data from the Large Hadron Collider.

Sam, who left Leeds Grammar School (now GSAL) in 2002, said: “If I can present science in an easily digestible way which will also make people laugh, then I’m happy. The use of stand-up comedy allows me to engage with audiences who may not go to traditional scientific events.”

Sam has been using his brand of humour to bring cutting-edge science into the mainstream since he took to the stage of Bright Club six years ago, a Cambridge-based venue where academics explain their research using stand-up comedy.

Later, when working in the control room of the CERN laboratory in Geneva as part of his PhD studies, he again got the chance to appear on stage, this time at a CERN comedy night.

Now back in Leeds, Sam dedicates much of his time to science outreach, working closely with his former school and other schools to make physics more accessible through workshops and comedy. He has taken his show on the road, travelling the UK and appearing in pubs, clubs, festivals, theatres, and secondary schools.

His latest show at GSAL is staged in conjunction with the Ogden Trust, a charitable organisation which promotes the teaching and learning of physics.  The show is at 6.00pm on Thursday 26 April; book free admission online

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