Icelandic Superstar Björk Brings Music and Education to Middle School Students at NYSCI
Björk, The Creators Project, and the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI) Collaborate on Education Programs and a Multimedia Installation
The Biophilia Education Series Accompanies Icelandic Star’s Biophilia Tour Stop at NYSCI
Björk, the Icelandic music superstar, is bringing a unique music and science education series to 50 Queens middle school students through a program at the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI).
In collaboration with Björk and The Creators Project, NYSCI is producing education programs for children, as well as a multimedia installation, as part of Björk’s Biophilia residency in New York City.
Fifty local middle school students will participate in the Biophilia Education Series. Students will explore the fundamentals of music composition and production using a suite of iPad apps created by Björk for her latest project, Biophilia, in which each of the album’s 10 songs delves into a scientific concept.
Students will also participate in demonstrations and hands-on activities led by NYSCI instructors that explore the scientific themes of Biophilia, including lunar phases, DNA, dark matter, viruses, equilibrium and more.
An Icelandic singer-songwriter known for her eclectic musical style incorporating rock, jazz, folk, electronic, dance and classical music, Björk collaborated with app developers, scientists, writers, inventors, musicians and instrument makers during the production of Biophilia. The result is a unique multimedia exploration of the universe and its physical forces – particularly those where music, nature and technology meet. The project explores the relationships between musical structures and natural phenomena. Biophilia was released on CD and as a suite of apps for the iPad and iPhone in October 2011.
Margaret Honey, president and CEO of NYSCI, said, “We are always looking for ways to engage children and motivate them to learn about science. Björk has conceived of a thoughtful, engaging way to use her music as a medium not just for teaching about melody and composition, but about science and nature too. It’s been a thrill to collaborate with Bjork in bringing Biophilia to New York.”
NYSCI is hosting the U.S. premiere of Björk’s Biophilia tour, following sold-out residencies in Manchester (UK) and Reykjavik (Iceland) in 2011. She will perform six shows at NYSCI, and an additional four shows at Roseland Ballroom in Manhattan, from February 6 through March 2, 2012. Tickets for the shows sold out within minutes of going on sale.
The Creators Project, a global network dedicated to the celebration of creativity, culture and technology, is working with NYSCI to create a suite of multimedia installations that will be on view at NYSCI during the Biophilia residency. Installations will explore the themes of Biophilia and highlight the inspirations and collaborations that were the impetus for the album. Each of the installations will be paired with an existing NYSCI exhibit exploring complementary scientific themes. For example, an installation pertaining to the song “Dark Matter” will be presented alongside NYSCI’s Cosmic Ray Detector, an exhibit showing visual echoes of the Big Bang. The Creators Project is also donating iPads to the Biophilia Education Series and providing artists who will support both the educational workshops and the installations.
Curver Throddsen, a musician and visual artist, and friend and collaborator of Bjork, is leading the development of music content for the Biophilia Education Series. He led the education components of the Reykjavik Biophilia residency. The success of that project is evidenced by the city of Reykjavik's decision to include Biophilia in the city's school curriculum for the next three years.
Students participating in the Biophilia Education Series are from middle schools in NYSCI’s neighboring communities of Corona and Flushing. The schools are partners in NYSCI Neighbors, a community participation program begun by NYSCI in 2011. In partnership with nearby schools, NYSCI Neighbors encourages non-traditional museumgoers to see cultural institutions (like NYSCI) as resources for lifelong family learning and involvement. In its inaugural year, more than 120 families joined NYSCI Neighbors. In 2012, the program is expanding into 25 additional schools.
About the New York Hall of Science
The New York Hall of Science presents 450 exhibits, demonstrations and design spaces that explain science, technology, engineering and math. A visit to NYSCI is a hands-on, energetic educational experience where you can indulge your curiosity and nurture your creativity. NYSCI offers professional development for teachers, produces curricula and resources for classrooms, and studies how technology, gaming and play affect how we learn. NYSCI was founded at the 1964-65 World's Fair and has evolved into New York's center for interactive science serving a half million students, teachers, and families each year.
From September through June, NYSCI is open 9:30 am – 2 pm Tuesday – Thursday, 9:30 am – 5 pm on Friday, and 10 am – 6 pm on weekends. Admission is $11 for adults and $8 for children (ages 2-17), college students with valid ID, and seniors (62+). For directions, and other information, visit www.nysci.org or call 718-699-0005.