Science Showoff Bristol 7, July 17th – SIGNUP NOW TO PERFORM

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.

Ten 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 musician or comedian with some experimental science material to try out or ANYONE.

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

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

Animal Showoff – July 8th, UCL Grant Museum


For this amazing new twist on the Showoff formula 10 incredible acts pick an animal each and show off as hard as they can about it. Expect science, jokes, music, stories and laughter as we get under the skin of ten different species with animal lovers from across the UK.


Steve Cross – science comedian and compere. Naked mole rat lover. Swan hater. Equivocal about voles.

Cat Rogers (opera singer) – The Woodbird

Rachel Jennings (Horniman Museum) – Pigeons

Gavin Broad (Natural History Museum) – Wasps

Theo Blossom (ZSL London Zoo) – Pangolins

Jack Ashby (UCL Grant Museum) – The Platypus

Chris Faulkes (Queen Mary University of London) – Naked Mole Rats

Naomi Webster (Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust) – Ploughshare Tortoises

Sophie Meekings (UCL Insitute of Cognitive Neuroscience) – A gorilla

Elizabeth Dearnley (UCL School of European Languages, Culture and Society) – Wolves

Claire Asher (UCL dept of Genetics, Environment and Evolution) – Tardigrades

Doors for the gig will open at 19:00. Tickets are £6 (plus NO BOOKING FEE) from the eventbrite link at the top. All the ticket money will go towards conservation of the specimens of the amazing Grant Museum.


Science Showoff at the Royal Society – June 30th

I can’t think of anything more august than Science Showoff. There is nothing in the world of research more dripping with gravitas, seriousness and Establishment values than us. (SHHH!!!! THIS IS WHAT WE TOLD THEM! DON’T SPOIL IT!!).

We’re coming to the Royal Society again! On Monday 30th June they’re doing one of those super-fashionable Lates things called ‘Twilight Science’, and guess who will be hiding out the back misbehaving like CRAZY? YES!! IT’S US!!

So come and spend a boozy, funny evening with us in the club that runs UK science. We’ll be entertained by some amazing science communicators old (Steve) and new (everyone else) with a mixture of talks, jokes, music and whatever else they feel like. They are:

Dr Steve Cross – science comedian. Annoying.

Anna Ploszajski – UCL chemist/engineer

Dr Monika Bohm – Zoological Society of London animal expert

Dr Ross Williams – University of Lincoln molecular biologist

Soazig Clifton – NatCen social researcher

Rajiv Ramaswamy – UCL biomedical imager

Dr Audrey Nailor – Science Showoff Bristol team member

Dr Andy Holding – University of Cambridge biochemist

Rob Stanley – UCL biological modeller

Dr Kate Storrs – UCL teaching fellow in visual perception

Come and join us on June 30th at 7.30 (doors open 7.00) for an amazing evening. There will be a bar and it will be AMAZING. It’s FREE!!

Full details of Twilight Science are here:


Science Showoff curated by Imran Khan – June 17th, Star of Kings


It’s time for the fourth of our guest-curated London gigs, and another evening of science-themed chaos in the nicest pub basement in the capital.

On June 17th we host a lineup curated by Imran Khan (not that one, not that one, that one) which is a fascinating mixture of old hands, new voices, science policy, fun and communication experts.

Joining us will be:

Steve Cross – our compere will as ever be this science comedian, naked mole rat fan, chemistry refuser and general troublemaker.

Greg Foot – Science Daredevil & TV Presenter Greg Foot has been shot, frozen, electrocuted and buried alive in the name of science. He’s even gone under the knife to find out what human’s taste of. Luckily he won’t be doing any of this at Science Showoff. That would be too messy and void our insurance. Instead, he’s going to tell the gruesome, bizarre and downright bonkers stories of the Top 10 Scientific Human Guinea Pigs – researchers who have pushed themselves to the limits to further human knowledge. Knowledge we probably could have done without.

Fiona Russell – A pain scientist for over ten years, Fiona still gets mistaken for a PhD student. Here she explains her love for Botox.

Beck Smith – set details to come.

Andrew Steele – Andrew is a physicist-turned-computational-biologist, and he’ll be talking about neither. Instead, he’ll be making sense of what we spend on science, iPhones and toilet paper with the Scienceogram.

Martin Austwick – Martin Zaltz Austwick is a sociable physicist at UCL-CASA, a somewhat sociable podcaster on Answer Me This, Brain Train and Global Lab, and a barely socialised musician with The Sound of The Ladies. He also really likes eggs, and will be explaining their relation to science, hairdressing, and democracy.

Kat Arney – Cancer, credulity and quackery – from Ernest Bashford to drinkable suncreen. They didn’t work then and they still don’t work now – Cancer Research UK’s Dr Kat Arney takes a look back at a century of ‘miracle cures’ for cancer.

Chris Clarke – I’m a physicist turned science communicator wondering haplessly into the realms of chemistry and materials while I play with the science of food and then eat it. I’ll be inviting you to stare lovingly into a pint, delicately sampling its exquisite sciencey qualities, before a good old fashioned quaff.

Neil Jerome – set to be confirmed.

The gig is at the Star of Kings, which is rapidly becoming our favourite small venue in London. The last three 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!

[ plus don't forget Geek Showoff aka "The Entire Internet Drunk On Stage In One Evening" the night after (June 18th): ]


Science Showoff at the Bridgwater Science Festival – Saturday May 31st

We love science festivals. And we love new things. So guess what happens when a new science festival starts? That’s right, SHOWOFF COMES TO TOWN.

What should you expect? Science. Anarchy. Jokes. Stories. Demos. Facts. Fun. Performance. An exciting, beery, science-y night out for adults who like to look at people being brilliant and weird on stage.

For this very special Somerset gig we’ve recruited a lineup that features the London and Bristol Science Showoff families and a couple of our very best friends. Joining us for some longer sets than normal, with even more science and chaos crammed in, are:

Dr Steve Cross – regular Showoff MC, magnet-owner, trouble-maker, comedian and joke-teller.

Ross Exton – science demo king of the south-west of England.

Dr Audrey Nailor – guerilla experimenter and nature lover.

Will Davies – defender of the rights of wasps.

Becky Brooks – biochemistry expert and downer of pints of science.

Holly Rogers – biologist and keen watcher of awful films.

The show is at the Bridgwater Arts Centre, which is here:

It starts at 7:30 SHARP and tickets are available from:


Science Showoff in Guildford for the BSA Science Communication Conference – April 30th


This year the wonderful British Science Association are holding their annual Science Communication Conference in Guildford, at the University of Surrey, for the first time.

A Science Showoff the night before the conference is basically an institution, AND WHO ARE WE TO UNDERMINE AN INSTITUTION, EH?

On the evening of April 30th we will present a chaotic scientific cabaret like no other, open to everyone and suitable for anyone over 18. Joining our magnificent lineup will be:

Steve Cross – science comedian, troublemaker, compere and timekeeper. If you’re lucky he might even do a science demo. I say ‘do’. ‘Ruin’ might be more accurate.

Dom McDonald - ex-maestro of Science Oxford, and now Dom the Demo Don of the Royal Society of Chemistry. That may not be his actual job title.

Nicola Rolfe – photonics researcher at the University of Surrey and science fun sharer extraordinaire.

Jon Wood – outreach officer at the University of Birmingham and notorious blower-up of things.

Megan Whewell – PhD student at the Mullard Space Science Laboratories and expert in stars and planets and all that stuff that is BEYOND SPACE. Or rather, IN SPACE.

Simon Watt – zoology-fuelled science communication dynamo.

Daniel Richardson – experimental psychology researcher at UCL and interaction innovator.

Rowena Fletcher-Wood – zeolite researcher, spectroscopist and science storyteller.

Lewis Hou – Fiddler and Science Ceilidh producer. You read that right.

Alexandra Clifford – psychology lecturer at the University of Surrey and baby brain examiner.

The venue is the rather lovely Ivy Arts Centre on the University of Surrey’s Guildford campus. The doors will open at 7.00pm, with the gig kicking off at 7.30pm. It should finish at around 10pm. Tickets are £5 from this link: and all of this £5 will go to a lovely local charity, Disability Challengers, who help disabled children and young people in Guildford and Farnham.

All of this is only happening thanks to amazing work by the University of Surrey and the British Science Association. Buy them a drink if you see them!

Science Showoff curated by Holly Rogers – May 20th, Star of Kings


So far that’s two guest-curated Science Showoffs in London, and two complete sell-outs! Now join us for ten acts from the little black book of Holly Rogers, chair of the British Science Association’s London branch and organiser of events for the Academy of Medical Sciences. Holly has chosen ten of her favourite science acts, doing a mixture of talks, demos, jokes and messing about. Joining us for this gig will be:

Steve Cross – At the last gig Steve ruined Ladybird books forever and proved that heterosexual sex is impossible using science. He’s our MC and troublemaker and will be hosting the show.

Nate Adams – Nate is an research scientist at University of Sheffield and an engagement junkie. He’ll be talking about throwing spanners at nanobots, aka the dark art of enzymology, mutagenesis, formulas and lots of graphs – all to save the planet with sunshine. Without showing any formulas or graphs. Promise.

Lydia Wood – Are you smarter than a 16 year old physics student?  Now is your chance to prove it! Lydia will require a bit of audience participation from those who are keen to demonstrate their physics prowess. Prizes will be won!

Ben Dornan – Ben is presently engaged in road safety research but will, mercifully, be talking about something else. Specifically: how an audio illusion demonstrates that we don’t just perceive the world, we build it around us.

Chella Quint – Chella Quint of “Adventures in Menstruating” will introduce the #PeriodPositive project, and explain periods as if kids learned about them on Sesame Street.

Ben Still – Ben will talk about the importance of understanding the limits of our knowledge, because there might be a Nobel prize in it! Science is more about understanding the confidence we have in results than the results themselves. Sometimes questioning our true understanding can lead to finding new science beyond the horizon of the priginal research.

Chris McManus – Chris will be talking about several decades of researching why the testicles are asymmetrical in men. He takes equality seriously and hopes also to extend this research to women.

Aditi Singh – Aditi Singh Is a science/maths teacher at an Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties school in Peckham which makes her vacillate between frantic activity and needing to lie down. When not engaged as such, she can be found saying unhelpful things to people at Science London, whom she works with to communicate science to adults.

Lindsey Keith – I’ll be talking marathons and stumpy legs.

Rebecca Nesbit and David Urry – We’ll be covering entomaphagy: eating insects. Compared to livestock, insects need less water, less food and less space but, best if all, they’re delicious… David will be performing his entomophagy song ‘Stick it in your mouth’.

and the amazing Holly Rogers herself – Could pigeons help us avoid a self-inflicted apocalypse? Should you experiment on your children? I’ll be talking about the life and legacy of the psychologist BF Skinner.

The gig is in the basement of the Star of Kings. That’s here. Tickets are £5 (plus booking fee of 50p) from and your £5 will go to Shelter From the Storm, a homeless shelter near Kings Cross who receive no government funding. Do buy tickets in advance because we will probably sell out and it makes us sad to turn people away on the door.