SCIENCE SHOWOFF at The Bloomsbury Theatre – Nov 6th


The chaotic science cabaret event, Science Showoff, your favourite chaotic night of science exploration, is back at the Bloomsbury.

Ten of UCL and London’s finest communicators of science will share their knowledge and entertain you throughout the evening with jokes, talks, music, demos and even poetry. Your host is Dr. Steve Cross, geeky joke-teller and veteran of more than 60 Science Showoffs.

Lineup includes:
Greg Foot
Carolyn McGettigan
Steve Fossey
Anna Ploszajski
Steve Le Comber
Nick Neasom
Erica McAllister
Rob Stanley

Watch for more details.

All the ticket money is being donated to Medecins Sans Frontiers

SCIENCE SHOWOFF 4.2 – Curated by Carla Washbourne. Oct 21st


For one night only Science Showoff, your favourite chaotic night of science exploration, presents a policy-themed night, curated by Dr Carla Washbourne from the UCL Dept of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy. Tonight experts in all the aspects of science will train their metaphorical microscopes onto a huge variety of subjects to create a memorable and messy night for you.

Tonight, for 9 minutes each, you’ll see:

Steve Cross – “A hyper well-informed science troll” (quote from television’s Elise Bramich)

Sarah Bell ‘Dumb desalination’ – Why desalination won’t solve the world’s water problems and how it might make energy and pollution problems worse. Unless you live in Texas.

Oli Marsh – I’ll look at how science in social media makes G​eek Chic into Geek Clique.

Els Merry-Price – The MSc of Microwear to Monkeys: When Science Goes Horribly Wrong”. The lesser spotted side of public science (even worse than the null hypothesis) featuring the tragic tale of tupperware and some seriously fat monkeys…

Cerys Bradley – Spiders and sex; an evaluation of evolution. With other animal facts.

Sarah Day – What is a boulder? Is this a petrified finger? (picture attached). How do I stab someone with a meteorite? Was setting up a geology enquiries inbox the worst idea I’ve ever had? At least some of these questions will be answered.  

Tasha Bray – set details tbc

Sophie Scott – I will re-create the Marvin Suggs and his Muppaphone for science.

Thrish Nanayakkara – Try to estimate the weight of a book, and guess why you gently bobbed it up down several times. I will try to share some thoughts on this based on our recent experiments on embodied perception

Carla Washbourne – A scenic tour through science policy: calling at Newcastle, London, Edinburgh (and an inexplicably large number of fields in the middle of nowhere)

And more to come!

Tickets cost £6 (plus a 60p booking fee) and all of that £6 will go to Global Generation who support young people to create the sustainable in which they want to live. You can buy a ticket here:

The gig is on October 21st, in the basement of the Star of Kings in Kings Cross. Doors open at 7pm, and the gig should finish at about 10pm.


Love Science?

Have something to say about it?

Looking for the nicest audience there is?

Based in the South-West?

I have news for you.

We’re coming back to Bristol for one of our bimonthly takeovers of the magnificent Grain Barge pub (it’s genuinely on a boat! It’s really exciting) for an evening of science-themed chaotic cabaret starring YOU.

Eight brilliant Bristolians (or those from nearby) are wanted to perform 9 minute sets of any kind about any sort of science. We welcome science presentations, demos, comedy, music, interpretive dance whatever you’ve got as long as it’s about science. This gig is perfect if you’re a scientist eager to get out more, a science teacher who wants to have an audience of adults for once, a science fan who wants to try a stage out for the first time, a musician or comedian with some experimental science material to try out or ANYONE AT ALL WHO LIKES FUN AND SCIENCE.

Signup here to perform: sets are up to 9 minutes long.

The gig is in the evening on Thursday Nov 20th (we’ll need performers from 6.30ish to 10.00ish) with doors opening at 7.00pm.

GEEK SHOWOFF 7 – October 27th, Old Queens Head London



Oh science.

You do go on sometimes: “Higgs Boson this… fMRI that… give me more money… don’t ask questions… blah blah blah…”

Couldn’t we hear about something else for once?

Yes. Yes we can.

GEEK SHOWOFF, the non-science version of Science Showoff is back with a lineup of brilliant obsessives and passionate lovers of things that will blow you away. Join us for a night of chaotic explorations of the things we love, and help raise money for an amazing charity (Arts Emergency) at the same time.

Tonight you’ll see:

Steve Cross – glasses-wearer and ubernerd
Charlotte Young – artist and creator of the unexpected
Pete Dillon Trenchard – comedian and Dr Who masher-upper
Dawn Foster – political journalist and Sky News starlet
Nathan Willcock – comedian and dreamer of dreams
Scott Bryan – Buzzfeed master and TV expert
Sam Wong – PR guru and erstwhile bioLOLogist
Kimberley Freeman – Jewellery purchaser and bakelite sniffer
Juliet Jacques – Writer and scourge of Twitter bellends
Fiona Laird – Theatre director and champagne connoisseur
Dave Pickering – Storyteller and tragic hero

Each of these unique and individual talents will get 9 minutes to take you into their world. And then NERD THE HELL OUT.

Tickets are £5 (plus 50p booking fee) and that fiver will all go to Arts Emergency who work tirelessly to try to make the UK arts and cultural industries diverse and fun rather than stuffed with the over-fed, under-talented offspring of Tory donors. From:

Doors will open at 7.00pm on Monday October 27th. The gig should finish at about 10pm. It’s upstairs at the Old Queens Head on Essex Rd, London.

Buy a ticket. Have a great time. Maybe learn something, yeah?



Last year we played at the Manchester Science Festival. The room was full, the crowd were lovely and the quality of the local science talent was unbelievable. It is only right that this year we return for more. We’re bringing science, comedy, demos, music, chaos and mucking about back to the best city in the UK. But only for one night!

And what a lineup we have this time!

Steve Cross will be your compere and MC. He’s a science comedian and mega-nerd.

Tom Bishop – Like humans, ants come in all shapes and sizes. I love them all, and want to share my burning passion for these lovely ladies with you. 

Sheena Cruickshank – A quick trip into the scary world of parasite mind control.

Katie Steckles – Mathematician Katie Steckles is always looking for obscure mathematical results she can use to impress audiences. Armed only with a block of A4 paper and a pair of scissors, she’ll be showing off her latest favourite bit of maths.

Scott Smith – Scott is a BA turned MSc student and hopes to take you on a brief exploration of the brain. Expect popping neurons, sticky tau and a ‘fasten’ating tour of PSP. 

Martin Currie – The Raygun Consultancy, with all due humility, seeks an opportunity, to display our weaponry, of terrible lethality, spreading our philosophy, rigorously and forcefully, of the necessity, to protect reality, from a catastrophe, through Raygun tee totality. One man’s struggle to stem the flood of Ray Guns, currently engulfing us all.

Sophie Powell – Join me on the search for the secret of eternal youth and uncover the truth behind the baffling science of the cosmetic industry! Can beauty products really live up to their ambitious claims?

Phil Manning – Phil is Professor of Natural History and Director of the cross-faculty Interdisciplinary Centre for Ancient Life (ICAL: at the University of Manchester (UK). Phil is also an STFC Science in Society Fellow, promoting science and technology to as wide an audience as possible.

Nate Adams – Highbrow research engagement through the medium of velcro, as Nate discusses his latest favourite experiment (i.e. it works) – Peak Force Quantitative Nanomechanical Mapping. There will also be party poppers…

Marcin Poblocki – Physics of FIRE and ICE (How to make a dry ice and plasma. Sublimation and ionization process).

Full details are available on the Manchester Science Festival website. Tickets are on sale in advance for £5, and all profits will go towards the Museum of Science & Industry’s charitable work in Manchester.

The gig is at MOSI, Liverpool Road, Castlefield, Manchester, M3 4FP. Doors open at 7.00pm.

Science Showoff Bristol 8 – Sept 18th, Grain Barge

Hi Bristol,

So, we’ve been seeing each other on and off for over a year now, and I feel like we really get on. There’s something special between us.

But I’m just not ready to commit. The nights we have together are incredible, full of science, and fun and chaos, and I love the fact that we have so many fantastically talented friends in common. Let’s keep doing that. Let’s not settle down and find ourselves watching Celebrity Big Brother while the world happens outside. Let’s keep making science weird and exciting together. Let’s make amazing things happen, but not too often. So how about it? September 18th maybe?

I was thinking we should ask a bunch of our brilliant friends along to entertain us in a science-y way for 9 minutes each. So how about:

Steve Cross – has a Wikipedia page. It seethes with passive aggression.

Audrey Nailor – Science Showoff traditionally shines the cold light of Science on poop, parasites and terrible creatures. I’ll be talking about the last, most disgusting taboo: the human fetus.

Bonnie Buckley – Do you love your eyelids? Find out what makes them so great and who’s missing out.

Antony Poveda – HAHAHAHahaha…haha…ha. Yes, we all love a good laugh, but what is comedy? Why does humour exist? And where is the funny bit in The Big Bang Theory? A deadly serious journey into the research that attempts to answer these critical questions, three wry smiles guaranteed!

 Ezzy Pearson – Why did the Moon get pounded during the Late Heavy Bombardment? Why did Jupiter and Saturn’s relationship cause Neptune to leave them for Pluto? How did the Earth getting over friendly with a passing planetoid end up with the Moon being born? BBC Sky at Night Magazine’s Ezzy Pearson talks through the sexy early days of the Solar System’s formation.

Matthew Allen – The year is 2057 and NASAs next mission is to send an Astronaut on a one way trip to the centre of a black hole. I’ll show you what it would be like as they fall in, explain what Spaghettification is and how they would be able to see the back of their own head!

Will Davies – The world of stand up comedy, like comedy, is rife with both inspiration and imitation. The difference between standing on the shoulders of giants and riding on their coat tails is often a matter of perspective. Or, in this case, a conversation over lunch that one of you forgot and the other didn’t, and then you remember it later and OH LOOK WHO’S DOING A STAND UP SHOW ABOUT IT, ANTHONY. FANCY THAT. ANTHONY. WOOOOOOOW. Anyway, here’s some shit about plagiarism.

Georgia Malcolm – A talk about an argument I had on Facebook with some hippies about the relative merits of expensive Himalayan pink salt, ordinary table salt and road grit salt

Tim Maynard – I’m going to show you what makes chameleons one of the most adapted lizards in the world.

The gig is at the Grain Barge in Bristol on September 18th. Doors open at 7pm with the gig starting at 7.30. We should be done by 10 and there will be an intermission. The gig is FREE but we’ll be collecting on the door for Bristol Mind (who support Bristol’s mental health) and we suggest a donation of FIVE POUNDS, all of which will go to the charity.

Me and you, Bristol. Me and you.


SCIENCE SHOWOFF 4.1 – Star of Kings, London, Sept 16th


London! Did you miss us? Season 4 starts here with a special treat – a night of chaotic science fun and excitement on September 16th curated by our compere and founder, Steve Cross. We’ll be filling the stage with science folk talking, telling jokes, doing demos, making music and generally just showing off. You just need to fill the room with your lovely selves.

And best of all – your ticket money will all go to the Child Poverty Action Group.

Tonight’s acts are a mixture of incredible new faces and hardened Showoff veterans:

David Mills – I’ll be taking about taking photos of the insides of things including my lunch and old books with X-Rays.

Helen Zaltzman – Helen Zaltzman is one half of the Sony Award-winning podcast Answer Me This!. She is an ‘internet expert’ on BBC 5 Live and created the world’s first giant inflatable Boggle set.

Chris Creese – After surviving venomous snakes and a band of faeces-throwing howler monkeys while living in the jungle for a PhD, Chris decided to take on the challenge of helping scientists communicate their research. The worlds are not so far apart and there’s still plenty of shit-dodging. Come hear Chris share behind-the-scenes stories of her scicomm (mis)adventures.

Dan Schreiber – Dan is a bespectacled funnyperson, broadcaster and raconteur. He’s the brains behind Radio 4’s Museum of Curiosity and is about to front his very own Channel 4 show.

Sam Evans – I’ll be talking about how we understand speech, and why speech scientists love to watch the clangers.

Sheila Kanani - I am usually physics’s number one fan, but for one night only I’ll be putting it down! Normally science helps us understands things, but physics just messes with your brain. I’ll use optical illusions and some brain hurting information about light and colour to denegrate physics!

Zoe Cunningham – Zoe Cunningham taxes her renaissance brain to the limit by attempting the previously unseen feat of Easy Science Experiments for Children. Yes, it does require safety goggles. Stand back.

Els Price – I’ll have a powerpoint presentation of fat monkeys to help discuss diabetes in primates from an evolutionary medical perspective (hopefully!) and the conclusion will definitely be that monkeys shouldn’t eat doughnuts, or ice cream.

Anna Darron – Anna Darron is not a scientist.. but she does work at the Science Museum!
She’ll answer the burning questions you never knew you had: ‘Where can you charge your Mars Rover?’  ‘What is the true colour of Science?’ and ‘Can you do CPR in space? ‘

James Longstaff – Do you like cheese? What do you really know about it? James has been attempting to fill in some gaps in his knowledge and will be talking about “The Science of Cheese.”

The gig is at the Star of Kings, which is rapidly becoming our favourite small venue in London. The last four curated Science Showoffs there all sold out well beforehand (so BUY TICKETS FAST) and were exceptionally brilliant fun. Doors will be at 7pm with the gig kicking off at 7.30. All the best seats will have been taken by 7.15!

We have raised ticket prices this year to help get more cash into the hands of charities who need it. They’re now £6, but all of this money will still go to our chosen charity the Child Poverty Action Group.