Sydney Science Festival 2019 Program Announced

Media bulletins, National Science Week

Media release from the Sydney Science Festival

Leading scientists, conservationists and comedians join Eddie Woo for the 2019 program including Dr Sylvia Earle, Michael Aw, Dr Elizabeth Blackburn, Dr Karl Kruszelnicki, Paul Davies, Adam Spencer, Andrea Boyd, Claire L Evans and Dr Alice Motion.

Sydney Science Festival is back for a fifth year with events across the city from 6 –18 August 2019. Coinciding with National Science Week, the 13-day program investigates how science informs and intersects with the contemporary issues we face every day. From climate change and oceanic pollution, how to halt aging to the future of space travel, the Festival asks, “how is science influencing the future?”

Produced by the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, the annual Festival occupies cultural spaces, universities and leading research institutions including Powerhouse Museum, Australian National Maritime Museum, Australian Museum, Western Sydney University, University of Sydney, University of New South Wales, Centennial Parklands and The Royal Botanic Garden. There will be over 160 events including exhibitions, panel discussions, talks, performances and trivia nights.

Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Chief Executive, Lisa Havilah said: “This year’s Sydney Science Festival will address how science informs and intersects with the contemporary issues that we face every day through scientific debates, exhibitions and events across Sydney.”


Australian Space Frontiers

A panel of leading female scientists including Dr Aude Vignelles from the Australian Space Agency, Dr Andrea Boyd from the European Space Agency and Dr Sarah Pierce from CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science discuss Australia’s unique opportunities in the new space race (13 August, Powerhouse Museum).

State of the Oceans with Dr Sylvia Earle

Marine biologist, oceanographer and author Dr Sylvia Earle joins a panel of Australia’s top scientists, conservationists, and underwater photographers to discuss the latest research around ocean pollution and the effects on our island nation (13 August, Australian National Maritime Museum).

Elysium Arctic

This new exhibition charts the journey of explorers, photographers
and scientists who sailed through Svalbard, Greenland and Iceland to document the remote polar north. Led by acclaimed wildlife photographer and conservationist Michael Aw, it traces the effects of climate change and features stunning new photography shown for the first time in Australia (6–18 August, National Maritime Museum).

Elizabeth Blackburn: The Telomere Effect

An exclusive event with Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn who will discuss her transformative research into telomeres and the key role they play in the ageing process (16 August, City Recital Hall).

Activism in the Age of Climate Change

Leading champions of climate change action in Australia, Founder and Director of CLIMARTE Fiona Armstrong and environmental lawyer Jemilah Hallinah join student activists to share their insights, motivations and inspirations (9 August, Powerhouse Museum).

Harbour Cruise: Aboriginal Perspectives of Sydney Harbour

A Sydney Harbour stargazing experience on board Tribal Warrior’s Mari Nawi (Big Canoe), with an all-Indigenous crew who will share stories and techniques used to navigate by the stars for thousands of years (17 August, National Maritime Museum).

Women and the Internet

Writer and Musician Claire L Evans discusses the story of the internet’s unsung female heroes explored in her breakthrough book, followed by a panel discussion with experts including cultural anthropologist and futurist Genevieve Bell, best-selling author Ginger Gorman and science journalist Natasha Mitchell (14 August, Sydney Town Hall).

The Al-Zr of the Periodic Table

A comedic ensemble of quick-witted scientists including Dr Karl Kruszelnicki, Adam Spencer and Dr Alice Motion uncover the weird and wonderful tales of the Periodic Table (14 August, University of Sydney).

The Planets: Music and Science in the Park

A performance of Planets by Gustav Holst performed by the Sydney Youth Orchestras at Centennial Parklands followed by a talk about the night sky and stargazing (17 August, Centennial Parklands).

The Hungry Tide

Internationally-renowned documentary maker, Tom Zubrycki, joins UTS Climate Change experts for a Q&A following a screening of The Hungry Tide (17 August, University of Technology Sydney).

Paul Davies: The Demon in the Machine

Theoretical physicist, cosmologist and best-selling author Paul Davies explores the questions surrounding life and how it began (13 August, University of New South Wales).

Big Science Day

A day of science demonstrations and workshops, including Hidden Mathematics talk with Eddie Woo, the Sydney Science Festival 2019 Ambassador (known for his Wootube channel) on how he brings mathematics to life (11 August, Powerhouse Museum).

Apollo 11

A new exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing with over 200 objects and Luke Jerram’s spherical installation Museum of the Moon (from 29 June, Powerhouse Museum).


  • Science and Art in conversation, a panel of multidisciplinary artists and scientists share their stories of how interaction between the arts and sciences can lead to exciting new developments (15 August, Culture at Work).
  • Science at the edge of consciousness, an exploration led by Dr Vince Polito (Macquarie University) into ancient and modern techniques of consciousness alteration (15 August, Giant Dwarf Theatre).
  • Unlocking the Cosmos with Light, a panel of astrophysicists from Macquarie University share how they study planets and distant galaxies using light (10 August, Powerhouse Museum).
  • MAAS Indigenous Sciences Symposium 2019, a day dedicated to honouring the next generation of Indigenous scientists (17 August, Powerhouse Museum).


  • A Night of Illusions, where leading sensory scientists present their favourite illusions to demonstrate how the brain shapes perception and memory, alongside interactive exhibits (10 August, Giant Dwarf Theatre).
  • ABC Live on Stage: Ockham’s Razor, an evening of short talks from scientists sharing cutting-edge stories of their work (15 August, Powerhouse Museum).
  • A live recording of the popular podcast at Wayward Brewery mixes science, trivia and live experience in STEMpunk Podcast Live: Trivia (13 August, Wayward Brewery).
  • Days of our Hives, comedian and bee keeper Alanta Colley combines stand-up and scientific revelations in a one woman show about the weird and wonderful world of bees (10–13 August, Mothership Studios).
  • Science in the City, a dedicated program for primary and high school students that brings practical science to life with hands-on activities and workshops (6–15 August, Australian Museum).


  • A free day for children at Taronga Zoo, in collaboration with the University of Sydney, invites kids to experience first-hand conservation science in action (17 August, Taronga Zoo).
  • Science in the Swamp returns to Centennial Parklands with a Superpower theme, where scientists will prove how superpowers can be found in nature, alongside a roving dinosaur (18 August, Centennial Park).
  • Living Laboratory: Science in the Garden, a free one-day outdoor festival at The Royal Botanic Garden for budding scientists with fossil-making, face-painting, microscope viewing and a behind-the-scenes tours of garden, laboratories and spaces (18 August, The Royal Botanic Garden).


Full program can be viewed here
Images: here
Twitter: @SydScienceFest


Sasha Haughan
0405 006 035