CEDENNA organizes numerous outreach activities, including conferences, talks, competitions, schools, seminars and exhibitions, to present its work to the general community, generating greater interest in science among the youth of our country.

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Aimed at awakening the interest of young people in science and the environment:

Science and theater joined together in the work CIENCIA/ficción (SCIENCE/fiction)

June 29, 2010

With the participation of the Center for the Development of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology of USACH, the Theatre of the Catholic University is featuring a new family theater production: CIENCIA/ficción. A group of youths, together with an old physics professor whose disappearance forms part of the urban myths of the school, confront a series of tests and mysteries in a great adventure, to save their city from the controversial project “Pure Air”.

Coca Duarte and Cristián Ruiz wrote the play CIENCIA/ficción, which will be presented from July 11 to August 29 at the TEUC (the Catholic University Theater), with the intention of constructing a dramatic text that contains experiments governed by different principles of physics.

The work, fostered by the Center for the Development of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (CEDENNA), deals with an environmental conflict provoked by the powerful company A-Zero, which puts into operation a controversial invention to clean the air at the cost of destroying the ecosystem. A physics teacher, who lives in seclusion from the world, and a group of young students join forces to provide a solution to this problem, but not without first going through a series of adventures that blend science and fiction.

For Dora Altbir, the director of CEDENNA, the dissemination and promotion of scientific culture is increasingly important in the world of today. “As a center for scientific and technological excellence, we want to contribute with this play to the creation of a new common space for dialogue between scientists and citizens, which seems to us fundamental in order to advance our country toward an economy of knowledge”, emphasized the director of the center, which is funded by CONICYT.

“The premise of the theater project emerged from the knowledge of the physics professor, Eugenio Vogel, about the Physics Circus, a science fair in the United States that aims to provide knowledge about physics through demonstrations of scientific experiments” state Coca Duarte y Cristián Ruiz. The playwrights chose the environment as the central theme to relate physics to a current issue. “The environment is a concern of our world, especially of our cities. We are facing health problems because of poor air quality, as an example. This is something that affects everyday life and that we can identify ourselves as involved,” declare the authors of CIENCIA/ficción.

Starting from the base that physics and theater are moved by a common energy, which is amazement and curiosity about the world, the work also distinguishes the ways in which the two approach the world. In general terms, physics seeks to describe and demonstrate natural phenomenon with veracity and exactitude. For its part, theater seeks to interpret and show sociocultural phenomenon from the perspective of subjectivity and fiction. In the encounter and creation of potential between science and theater, the latter discipline provides elements that are its own and that move between fiction and representation.

In practice, the CEDENNA researcher, Eugenio Vogel, adds, CEDENNA, Eugenio Vogel, “the idea of incorporating physics experiments into a play seems like something improbable: the special effects in movies and a good part of the tricks in magic acts are precisely examples of this. What is interesting about CIENCIA/ficción is that playwrights knew how to maintain a correct balance between the contingency that establishes the ambiance of work, the relationship of youth with current society, the scientific spirit of a teacher, business ambitions, suspense and the amazing, to produce an entertaining unpublished play in our Chilean context” pointed out the professor from the Universidad de La Frontera.

The director of the work, Elvira López Alfonso, actress and professor at the Catholic University’s Theater School, tells how her relationship with physics when she was in high school influenced this work. “At school I entered a cloud of anxiety because of a misplaced educational priority on achievements rather than understanding. In this work, we try to begin the other way around: to understand in order to then learn”, indicated the director, who added that the work reflects on the problem of environment, awareness and the capacity of citizens to generate change.

For the actor, Daniel Gallo, who stars in the work, CIENCIA/ficción is notable for the concrete relationship it has with physics. “I believe the interesting thing is that people realize that everything is related to physics, including the pollution of our air. Physics is in the real world, all these concepts that seem so remote, like mass, volume, force, lasers, speed, etc., all these things really have a close relation to life itself”.

Performances

July 11 – August 29

Saturday 5:00 pm

Sunday 12:00 pm

Familiar theater

Reservations: 205 5652

Teatro UC (Jorge Washington 26, Plaza Ñuñoa)

www.teuc.cl

CIENCIA/ficción

De Coca Duarte and Cristián Ruiz

Director: Elvira López Alfonso

Cast: Daniel Gallo, Maureen Boys, Leonel Arregui, Sofía Zagal, Sol Inzunza, Camila González, Christian Aguilera, Damian Gallardo.

Music: Pablo Ilabaca and group

Stage design: Luis Cifuentes

Production: TEUC

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