What is Science Showoff?!?

What is Science Showoff?

It’s a chaotic open mic night for scientists, science communicators, science teachers, historians and philosophers of science, students, science popularisers and anyone else with something to show off about science.

When and where does it happen?

At least once a month in London, and also all over the country, especially Bristol, usually starting at 7pm. The first gig was on October 4th, 2011.

What happens on the night?

We start at 7.30, with an introduction from compere Steve Cross, and the night runs in two halves, each an hour long. The signed-up performers take to the stage to show off their science. They might:

Show a film they just made
Try out a new demo
Practice a new science comedy set
Tell us about their new discovery
Perform an 9-minute play about science
Play their new song about protons
Tell us what they’ve been up to
Predict the future
Give us a taster of their science-themed Edinburgh show
Read us their latest science poem
Try out a bit of a new science lesson on us
Play us a short radio documentary
Experiment on the crowd
Read us a blogpost
Perform an interpretive dance about science

Or anything else…

Every set lasts 9 minutes or less. There’s a 20 minute intermission and we finish by 10pm, to give us an hour of picking each other’s brains over beer and to form new plans and partnerships before closing time.

Is there money involved?

No-one gets paid. We sell tickets and all proceeds go to a charity, chosen for that month’s gig. In our first year we raised £5000 for a collection of charities. In our second year (Sept 2012-Aug 2013) we raised £12 000. Year three (Sept 2013-Aug 2014) we raised £15 000.

I want you to come to my town / organise a gig with my conference

Brilliant. We’d love to. We’ve gigged at the British Science Festival, Manchester Science Festival, The Green Man Festival, the Cardiff Science Festival, with the British Science Association Science Communication Conference, SpotOn London, Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s Epic Encounters Season and loads more!

We’ll need you to find someone who will pay for our trainfares and hotels, though. Email us to find out more.

Sometimes you post ‘SIGNUP TO PERFORM’. How does that work?

For these gigs we publish an online sign-up sheet. The first people to sign up are guaranteed slots of up to 9 minutes on the night to do whatever they like as long as it has a science flavour. The organisers hold a few slots for invited guests.

Have you won any awards?


Recent Posts

SCIENCE SHOWOFF 12 – July 23rd, Hatchet Inn, Bristol

Tickets £5 (plus 50p booking fee) in advance
Jewel of the South-West, fair city built on seafaring, slavery and two terrible football teams, we return to you. Come to us for a night of chaotic science entertainment with some of the best geek talent to be found all around you. Tonight we offer a diverse menu of brainfood, locally sourced and all organic (like the chemistry rather than the farming practices). They are:

Steve Cross – science comedian, MC and troublemaker. From that London.
Paul Curnow – Songs in the key of life sciences; Self-penned ditties with a science twist
Jen Garrett – During the Wildlife Trusts ’30 Days Wild’ campaign in June, I challenged myself to write a poem per day observing wildlife in the city. Given that I could only count the number of poems I’d previously written on one hand, it was not surprising that I failed miserably by day 7. Good news is you don’t have to listen to 30 hastily written poems… bad news is you do have to listen to a few.
Antony Poveda – In defiance of Google, and with the help of the ultimate man crush, Antony will be trying to find a practical application for chaos theory.
Kevlin Henney – Opposites attract, so they say. But what about on a first date? At a planetarium? Between someone who’s into astronomy and someone who’s into astrology? Stars and science collide in this short story, “Star Signs”.
Jack Heal – Have we already made artificial life?
Clare Duxbury – Everybody knows about the classic five senses, here’s a spotlight on the unrecognised and unloved other senses your body has put at your disposal.


The gig is on Thursday the 23rd July at the Hatchet Inn, with doors opening at 7pm. Tickets are £5 (plus 50p booking fee) in advance from here. Or £6 on the door. All ticket money is going to LGBT Bristol to support local people.

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