Sunday, April 26, 2015

History, comedy and science connect at FringeArts

And they can even be funny with a little help from the professor (me). Come see for yourself this week.

History, comedy and science connect at FringeArts

Members of Asteroid! suffering through Study Hall so that you can fall off your seat laughing: front, Caitlin Weigel (left) and Lora Magaldi; middle, Jessica Ross and AJ Horan; back, Luke Field and Aaron Unice (yep, that´s me in between). Photo by Erin Pitts.
Members of Asteroid! suffering through Study Hall so that you can fall off your seat laughing: front, Caitlin Weigel (left) and Lora Magaldi; middle, Jessica Ross and AJ Horan; back, Luke Field and Aaron Unice (yep, that's me in between). Photo by Erin Pitts.

Earlier this year at the Philadelphia Science Festival, I teamed up with comedians to dramatize (term used very loosely) real life events from the history of science and medicine. We've done it three years running, and it works like this: I give a monologue on a historical topic, then the improv group does a comedy riff on the crazy historical stories I share. And, I kid you not, people laugh.

Because despite what you think, history, science, and professors are (well, can be) funny.

Expanding on our popular act from the Science Festival, I am again teaming up with Philly Improv Theater’s Improv House Team "Asteroid!" to create a full hour of spontaneous comedy inspired by brutally honest science. The event – this Thursday through Sunday at the Fringe Festival – is called “Study Hall.” In it, I will exploit every ounce of my tenure to lecture on a wide variety of topics (many not appropriate for kids) and Asteroid! will warp each lesson into outrageous scenes on the spot.

What makes this so funny? Asteroid! member Jessica Ross says that “it's like taking the most interesting class in school and then getting to see the class clowns make fun of it.” For the improv artists, the format is a challenge they enjoy. As Asteroid!’s Lora Magaldi told me: “It's a great way to learn to listen to information because you need to remember as many details as possible and then be able to extract them over the course of the show.” And I can tell you that the whole troupe are true improve/comedy professionals, and it has been a joy to work with them.

So come join the laughs and learning! Tickets are on sale now.

And don't be late to Study Hall!


Study Hall

Asteroid! is Bert Archer, Luke Field, AJ Horan, Brent Knobloch, Lora Magaldi, Jessica Ross, Aaron Unice and Caitlin Weigel joined for Study Hall by Professor Michael Yudell. Directed by Mike Marbach.

Dates:

Thursday 9/19 @ 7pm

Friday 9/20 @ 7pm

Saturday 9/21 @ 7pm

Sunday 9/22 @ 7pm

Location:

Adrienne Theater, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103

Price:

$12 to $15 online.


Read more about The Public's Health.

About this blog

What is public health — and why does it matter?

Through prevention, education, and intervention, public health practitioners - epidemiologists, health policy experts, municipal workers, environmental health scientists - work to keep us healthy.

It’s not always easy. Michael Yudell, Jonathan Purtle, and other contributors tell you why.

Michael Yudell, PhD, MPH Associate Professor, Drexel University School of Public Health
Jonathan Purtle, DrPH, MSc Assistant Professor, Drexel University School of Public Health
Janet Golden, PhD Professor of history, Rutgers University-Camden
Latest Health Videos
Also on Philly.com:
Stay Connected