If you have been left open-mouthed with amazement by the magical illusions of performers such as Dynamo and Derren Brown, your next thought is: “How DID they do that?”.
Well, science can help to unlock their secrets – and a special event at the University of Huddersfield will show how.
In addition to an exploration of the mystique of magic, there will also be an opportunity for participants to unleash their inner rock star using the very latest computer technology. And for visitors with a strong stomach and a fascination for CSI-style forensics, there will be a chance to sniff out the scent of death.
The free event – designed to appeal to children and adults – is tomorrow, Friday, September 30 starting at 4pm.
It is the University of Huddersfield’s contribution to the European-wide international Researchers’ Night, which celebrates science and technology in hundreds of towns and cities, with more than a million participants.
At a special “Magic of Science” workshop, tricks of the trade will be revealed by showing the scientific principles used by magicians for centuries.
Nik Taylor, who teaches drama, theatre and performance at the University, said: “We will be looking at how many magicians are interested in science and how they are able to fool your senses.
“Magicians are inventors, often using science to enchant their audiences, though in very devious ways! You might even learn a magic trick that you can take away with you to amaze your friends.”
Among the host of other events taking place on the night is the “Scent of Death” workshop with forensic anthropologist Dr Anna Williams. Participants will be given the grisly opportunity of smelling the different stages of decomposition as a body starts to decay after death.
Budding musicians get the chance to use unique software that creates rock songs using Artificial Intelligence. It was designed by Huddersfield PhD student Valerio Velardo, alongside music technology experts Dr Steven Jan and Dr Jonathan Wakefield.
Other highlights of the evening include:
· A Guinness World Record attempt with Dr Chris Cooper using a breast cancer protein
· A European Corner that will showcase the University’s collaborations and some of the exciting research that the University is involved with across the European Union (EU)
· Lectures and expert talks including an interactive session with Dr Chris Street to discover more about clues of deception and telling lies. The audience will be invited to guess who is telling the truth and who is lying during a live presentation.
The evening will finish with a bang with a grand finale and fireworks display.
To register for the free event, visit www.hud.ac.uk/steam.