Meet the mighty gene machine
Burnet, F., Johnson, B. and Bultitude, K. (2005) Meet the mighty gene machine. [Performance]
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Meet the Mighty Gene Machine is a performance piece designed to promote discussion of the issues raised for individuals by advances in gene technology. The piece begins with a short play, based on the format of a reality TV show, whose script and characters illustrate key areas for subsequent debate amongst members of an audience of 16 - 19 year olds. It was premiered at the Czech Academy of Sciences in Prague on November 6th 2003. Subsequent performances have been staged at Cheltenham Town Hall during the Cheltenham Festival of Science 2004 and then during 2005 in Cardiff, Wrexham, Aberystwyth, Cambridge and London. In 2006, a modified version was created for performance in schools which is being disseminated UK-wide through the Science Centre Network. Funded originally by the British Council, the work subsequently received both a People Award from the Wellcome Trust for the creation of a UK version for 16-19year olds and a 183 Award also from the Wellcome Trust for the development of a variant targeted at adults. In 2006 the Trust gave a Society Award to enable national dissemination. Workshops for science communication practitioners wishing to develop events of this kind have been held in Maastricht (April 2005); Perugia (Sept 2005); Trieste (September 2006), Riga and Daugavpils (September 2006). A peer reviewed paper relating to this output was presented at the PCST Beijing Working Symposium entitled Strategic Issues in Science and Technology Communication (Beijing June 2005).