Museum of Science’s 2013 Fall Calendar


1. Jerusalem

Opens Friday, September 20 in the Mugar Omni Theater

Take an inspiring, eye-opening tour of one of the world’s oldest, most enigmatic cities. Destroyed and rebuilt countless times over 5,000 years, Jerusalem’s timeless appeal endures. Learn how it became the center of the world for three major religions and how its historical, artistic, and spiritual connections have made it so important to so many different cultures.

JERUSALEM is presented by National Geographic and is Cosmic Picture/Arcane Pictures Film.

2. Hall of Human Life

Opens Saturday, November 16

The Hall of Human Life, a new 10,000-square-foot exhibition set to open in November, aims to revolutionize how people understand their own biology by investigating how humans change over time in our dynamic environments. Designed to highlight breakthroughs in biology and biotechnology, the components within the Hall of Human Life will spark curiosity about innovations in life sciences and help Museum visitors build thinking skills to make informed choices.

Visitors will be able to take fifteen unique personal measurements, and their actual data will be central to telling the exhibition’s stories.

3. Dead Sea Scrolls: Life in Ancient Times

Closes Sunday, October 20

The Dead Sea Scrolls are one of the greatest archaeological finds of all time. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see a selection of the famed manuscripts—including literary writings of the times and the oldest known texts of the Bible—that date back over 2,000 years. Experience firsthand the traditions, beliefs, and iconic objects of ancient Israel and explore their continuing impact on world cultures.

Created by the Israel Antiquities Authority from the collections of the Israeli National Treasures.

4. Big Bird’s Adventure: One World, One Sky

Now Showing in the Charles Hayden Planetarium

Explore the night sky with your favorite friends from Sesame Street in Big Bird’s Adventure: One World, One Sky. Follow along with Big Bird, Elmo, and their friend from China, Hu Hu Zhu, as they take you on a journey of discovery to learn about the Big Dipper, the North Star, the Sun, and the Moon.

Big Bird’s Adventure: One World, One Sky was created by the Adler Planetarium, Sesame Workshop, the Beijing Planetarium, and the Liberty Science Center.

5. Climate Change in Our World: Photographs by Gary Braasch

Now Open; Free with Exhibit Halls Admission

We have made the world of today. Human population growth, energy use, agricultural methods, and land development have all had a measurable effect on our climate. Our activities have raised the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to its highest level in millions of years. The average temperature is climbing out of the range in which living species evolved and is now affecting sea level, ocean acidity, and water availability. Melting ice caps and glaciers, as well as weather extremes, have also resulted from this phenomenon.

View the works of environmental photojournalist Gary Braasch to observe how climate change is altering our planet. You’ll also see how humans are working to slow these changes through alternative energy use and conservation.

6. Seasons of Change

Now Open; Free with Exhibit Halls Admission

Seasons of Change illustrates how climate change is impacting the landscape of New England and how it affects the people who live here, including you. You will have an opportunity to share your thoughts about what aspects you might miss most about New England’s current climate.

The exhibit also includes an interactive global climate change table where you can simulate the effects that slight changes in water temperature have on our land, water, people, and animals. Compare coastal flooding today with projections that take you 100 years into the future, and explore issues like invasive species and forest change.

Seasons of Change was developed by members of the New England Science Center Collaborative and Brown University’s Watson Institute of International Studies and Center for Climate Studies under a grant from the National Science Foundation.


1. College Night

Friday, September 27; 5:00 – 9:00 pm

Free Exhibit Halls admission; additional venues $5 with a valid college ID card

College students are invited to discover the unique offerings of the Museum. Bring your valid student ID and enjoy free admission to the Exhibit Halls, plus a special opportunity to visit the Theater of Electricity, see a Live Animal show, and ride a Boston Duck Tour.

2. IN/FIN/ITE PRESENTS: A Song for Echo

Thursday, September 26; 6:30 – 7:15 p.m., 7:30 – 8:15 p.m.

Admission $15

According to ancient mythology, the woodland nymph Echo was fascinated by the handsome Narcissus, and wished to lure him into marriage. Unable to say anything on her own, her voice could only repeat the last words said, but this was not enough for the arrogant Narcissus. Heartbroken, Echo fled deep into the forest, her body turning to mountain stone. Her soul is often considered to be the faint reverberation of the wind, still calling out for her lost love.

New York City-based artist Julie Nymann produces video and performance works which recite the inherent dualities embodied in the story of Echo and present in all people. Nymann emphasizes the acts of self-attraction, repulsion, intimacy, and distance. Boston-based musician Ricardo Donoso produces emotional soundscapes that become “a mirror in which the illusions we hide ourselves behind are dissolved.”

A Song for Echo seeks to explore the notions of love, transformation, and self-reflection through an audio/visual collaboration between two artists of diverse interdisciplinary backgrounds.

With Ricardo Donoso; composer, percussionist, and electronic musician; Julie Nymann; visual artist and photographer

3. Rethinking the Role of Women in Biblical Israel

Wednesday, October 2; 7:30 – 9:30 p.m.

Admission $15

Was Israelite society really patriarchal? What stand did early religions take on female enslavement? Was Mary Magdalene an apostle of Jesus or possibly even his wife? Modern technologies have revealed details of ancient documents that are shedding new light on the role of women at the time of the Dead Sea Scrolls. How is this new information changing our understanding of Judaism and Christianity?

Engage in a thought-provoking conversation as we rethink the position of women, the beginning and development of the two religions, and the shifts in contemporary faith that may result from these fresh insights.

With Bernadette J. Brooten, PhD, Kraft-Hiatt Professor of Christian Studies, Brandeis University; author, Love Between Women: Early Christian Responses to Female Homoeroticism; Karen L. King, PhD, Hollis Professor of Divinity, Harvard Divinity School; author, The Gospel of Mary of Magdala: Jesus and the First Woman Apostle; and Carol Meyers, PhD, Mary Grace Wilson Professor of Religion, Duke University; author, Rediscovering Eve: Ancient Israelite Women in Context and Introductory remarks by Steve A.N. Goldstein, MD, PhD, provost, Brandeis University

4. Women in Science Luncheon: What Cancer Cells Don’t Want Us to Know

Monday, October 7; 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Admission $50 per person; $500 per table of 10

Created by a group of women affiliated with the Museum of Science as trustees, overseers, and donors, the Women in Science Luncheon series is a unique forum that enables an audience of interested women to hear about the research and life experiences of distinguished female scientists and engineers, exchange ideas, and make lasting connections.

According to Dr. Galit Lahav, cancer cells are like criminals who develop secrets so they don’t get caught. Her team uses high-resolution approaches to uncover these secrets, including examining individual cancer cells and measuring their behavior over time. Her findings are helping to explain why cells vary so dramatically in their response to specific drugs.

Sponsored in part by the Roy A. Hunt Foundation.

5. Influence of the Dead Sea Scrolls on Modern Theology

Wednesday, October 9; 7 – 9 p.m.

Admission $15

The Dead Sea Scrolls have been described as the most important archaeological discovery of the 20th century. How have the scrolls changed our understanding of the Bible? Join two renowned scholars in a discussion of how the scrolls have altered the way we look at ancient Judaism and the Bible, and the significance of the scrolls to the Jewish and Christian religions.

With Lawrence H. Schiffman, PhD, vice provost for undergraduate education and professor of Judaic Studies, Yeshiva University; James C. VanderKam, PhD, John A. O’Brien Professor of Hebrew Scriptures, University of Notre Dame and Introductory remarks by Ann Olga Koloski-Ostrow, PhD, associate professor, co-director of graduate studies, chair, Department of Classical Studies, Brandeis University

6. Beyond the Telescope: Galaxies Across Cosmic Time

Tuesday, October 15; 7 – 9 p.m.

Admission $15

With their rich variety of shapes, galaxies are among the most visually stunning phenomena in the sky. They once set the stage for star and planet formation, which allowed us to be here to admire them. Yet we still have a poor understanding of the processes governing how galaxies form and evolve.

Join Tufts University professor Anna Sajina as she describes how we observe distant galaxies and reveals new insights we have gained into their evolution from the Big Bang until today.

7. Cosmic Loops: Music Beneath the Stars

Thursday, October 24; 7:15 – 8:30 p.m.

Admission $15

Imagine listening to live music as you soar through nebulas, galaxies, and star systems while simple beginnings build layer by layer into an intricate universe of musical textures. Two musicians expand the sonic boundaries of their instruments, each with his own self-invented techniques. Acoustic double-neck guitarist Ian Ethan Case fluidly combines a staggering variety of self-invented playing methods necessitated by his multilayered compositions, while Matthew Schoening plays the electric cello through a complex process of sound looping performed live, with no prerecorded material. Experience the moment of creation as these two virtuosos perform live together — their music complemented by visions from deep outer space.

With Matthew Schoening, composer/musician, and Ian Ethan Case, composer/musician.

8. Can We Change Our Genes?

Wednesday, October 30; 7 – 9 p.m.

Admission Free

If you share most of the same genetic material, what makes you so different from your siblings? How much are the things you choose to do every day — what you eat, how you vote, whom you love — determined by your genes, and how much is your own free will?

Using fascinating case studies of identical twins, leading geneticist Tim Spector explains how even real-life “clones” with the same upbringing turn out in reality to be unique. Join us at the inaugural Lee and Nile Albright Annual Symposium for a compelling examination of how we become the individuals that we are. Book signing to follow.

Funding provided by the Lee and Nile Albright Annual Symposium Fund. Additional funding provided by the Lowell Institute.

9. What is Life?

Wednesday, November 13; 7 – 9 p.m.

Admission $20

Three seminal figures in biological and biomedical sciences discuss life as we know it, life as it may have begun, and life as it may evolve in the future. From basic elements of human biology to nuances in aging and illness and on to life forms we’ve never known before, venture into an investigation of what we know, what we may find out, and what we have yet to imagine. Cocktail reception follows this Reno Family Foundation Symposium.

With George M. Church, PhD, Gary Ruvkun, PhD, and Jack Szostak, PhD. Funding provided by the Reno Family Foundation Fund.


1. Butterfly Garden—Permanent Exhibit

Enjoy a warm, tropical oasis right here in New England! Experience a living exhibit filled with blooming plants and free-flying butterflies, including several species that are new to the Museum’s Butterfly Garden this winter. Come in from the cold and check out our new Euploea Camaralzeman or Malayan Crow butterflies— these will be introduced into the garden once they emerge from their chrysalises. We also have new Consul Fabius or Tiger Leafwing butterflies, which can be difficult to spot because they blend in like leaves until they open their wings. Entrance to the Butterfly Garden is limited to a certain number of individuals at one time to allow all visitors to enjoy the space comfortably. Ongoing.

2. Simulator Experience

$5 for non-members; $4 for members

Audiences are invited to experience the newest venue at the Museum of Science when they step on board our full-motion simulator for a dynamic excursion unlike any other. Journey through space, explore the Bermuda Triangle, tag along with a water molecule, and much more!

3. Mugar Omni Theater

In the Mugar Omni Theater, the world’s largest film format is projected onto a five-story-tall IMAX® Dome screen. It wraps audiences in larger-than-life images of flora, fauna, and faraway places. A state-of-the-art digital sound system completes the immersion effect. For detailed show-time information, please visit Sponsored by Mathworks.

4. Rocky Mountain Express

Journey back to the age of steam, when colossal feats of engineering and epic risk-taking united a vast, rugged continent. Award-winning filmmaker and train enthusiast Stephen Low brings you aboard a steam locomotive to retrace the original route of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Ride alongside deep river canyons and over high mountain passes — through some of the most beautiful and rugged landscapes on Earth — and discover the stories behind a railway that shaped a nation.

5. The Greatest Places

From oceans of sand to frozen deserts, Earth’s most dynamic landscapes fill the giant screen with color and contrast. The Greatest Places takes audiences on a geographical odyssey to seven amazing locations — including Greenland’s giant icebergs, Tibet’s Chang Tang Plateau, and Iguazu’s immense waterfall — that show nature’s enduring power in high relief.

The film explores beautiful landforms, amazingly complex ecosystems, and rich cultures of indigenous peoples that are inseparable from the places where they live. Though diversity is the theme of The Greatest Places, the film reveals that nature, and human nature, are what unify us as a planet.

The Greatest Places is presented by the Science Museum of Minnesota in partnership with the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, the St. Louis Science Center, the Cincinnati Museum Center, and the Goto Optical Manufacturing Co., with major funding provided by the National Science Foundation.

6. The Last Reef: Cities Beneath the Sea

Fly across iridescent tropical reefs, brush through a cloud of a million jellyfish, and visit an alien world where the closer you look, the more you see. We think of reefs as exotic, distant places with little or no connection to our everyday world. Yet every reef is a living city beneath the sea with a parallel existence to ours, distant yet undeniably connected.

Reefs are hotspots of biodiversity as vital to life on Earth as the rainforests. They have been shaping our shorelines, literally forming islands and mountains, for millions of years. But the world’s coral reefs are also vanishing at five times the rate of the rainforests and could be gone within our lifetime. Like cities on land, though, reefs can rebuild. Catch a glimpse of the future with an inspirational vision of the reef’s incredible power to flourish again.

The Last Reef: Cities Beneath the Sea is a production of Giant Screen Films, Yes/No Productions and Liquid Pictures. Photo © Giant Screen Films,Yes/No Productions and Liquid Pictures

7. Charles Hayden Planetarium

The Charles Hayden Planetarium is the most technologically advanced digital theater in New England. Powered by superior full-dome video and audio systems and a new state-of-the-art star projector, this facility brilliantly showcases shows and live presentations.

8. Moons: Worlds of Mystery

Take a journey through our solar system and explore the remarkable diversity — and surprising might — of moons! From volcanoes and geysers to ice-covered oceans and methane rain, these natural satellites have some spectacular features, and many even exert a surprising influence on their planetary partners. Learn what these celestial bodies reveal about the history and workings of our solar system.

Narrated by Ed Helms. Written and produced by the Museum of Science.

9. Undiscovered Worlds: The Search Beyond Our Sun

Through the discovery of exoplanets — the hundreds of planets that have been found orbiting stars beyond the Sun — we have learned that our solar system is not alone in the universe, and we have had to redefine our understanding of planets and solar systems.

With new achievements like the Kepler Telescope and rapidly improving technology, the discovery of exoplanets puts us one step closer to the possibility of finding an Earth-like world. How will this change how we view our place in the universe?

10. Explore: The Universive

Leave the Earth behind and take off with a Planetarium educator as your star pilot.

Fly through the solar system, Milky Way, and beyond as you explore cosmic mysteries, see how objects interact in space, and hear about missions that are helping us understand the universe today.

11. Ghosts of Jupiter: Music Experience

Celebrating the release of their self-titled album Ghosts of Jupiter, the Boston-bred rock quintet has partnered with the Museum to create a new eye-popping music entertainment show in the Charles Hayden Planetarium. A rock-and-roll journey through space and time, Ghosts of Jupiter: Music Experience takes you on a fantastic ride into the outer reaches of the mind.

This show is not recommended for young children or people sensitive to loud music.

12. Laser Shows

Back by popular demand! Experience dazzling light displays set to popular music and listen to your favorite tunes as never before. Our three-show lineup currently features the classic, influential sounds of legendary rockers Pink Floyd, the epic masterpieces and arena anthems of ‘70s and ‘80s Queen and the chart-topping hits of new pop sensation Justin Bieber.

Check for showtimes.

13. 3-D Digital Cinema

Don the classic eyewear and take off on an adventure in perception with short films showing on a state-of-the-art digital projection system.

14. Flights of the Butterflies

Take flight with a scientific adventure spanning not only thousands of miles, but generations. Discover what makes the spectacular Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) migration one of the most incredible such events on Earth.

Follow a Monarch on her perilous journey from Mexico to Canada, along with her daughter, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter. The outstanding fourth, or “Super Generation” of butterflies travels south, from the northern United States and southern Canada to Mexico, overwinters, and makes one final short trip to the southern United States to lay eggs. Then, the cycle begins anew. It’s one adventure you won’t want to miss!

15. Meerkats

Cute, cuddly, and full of mischief, meerkats are also tough, tenacious, and not to be messed with if their pups are threatened. Join a family of meerkats—headed by fierce matriarch Clinky—as they cope with the challenges of life in the Kalahari Desert. Watch as they survive turf wars with rival clans and attacks from vicious predators big and small, not to mention internal family drama. Viewers will discover that meerkats’ adorable looks belie an amazing strength of purpose and innate intelligence.

Meerkats is a production of National Geographic Entertainment.

16. Sea Monsters: A Preshistoric Adventure

When strange bones are discovered in a muddy Kansas riverbank, paleontologists set out to investigate a mystery buried in time. Through ultra-realistic 3-D computer animation, travel back to the Late Cretaceous period, when the sea was dominated by giant marine reptiles, some as large as present-day whales. Follow a female Dolichorhynchops (a seal-like reptile) and her offspring through adventures that illustrate life in the sea during the Age of Dinosaurs.

Live-action re-creations of actual paleontological digs are shown throughout the film, revealing the scientific basis for each animated episode. Discover for yourself if the bones in Kansas are in fact those of the Dolichorhynchops featured in the film.