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The National Science and Media Museum is now open. Please book free museum admission or cinema tickets online in advance

The Science of Sound

This year, we’re celebrating all things sound. Come along and make noise, hear music and experiment with the science of sound.

More special events

AFRICAN DRUMMING

LOCATION: National Science and Media Museum
DATE AND TIME: 10.30, 11.30, 12.30, 13.30, 14.30, 23 and 27 October; 15.00 (27 October only); 15.30 (23 October only)
AGE: Suitable for all ages

Come and be uplifted by wonderful drumming and discover traditional Igbo rhythms from local African drummer Moses Ekebuisi. Performances last 15 minutes.

TRANQUIL SPACES

LOCATION: BCB Radio, 106.6FM and online
DATE AND TIME: 17.45, 25–29 October as part of Bradford & Beyond (repeated the following morning, 11.00–12.00)
AGE: Suitable for families with children aged 11+

In lockdown, many of us have been spending more time at home than ever before, which often means dealing with unwanted noise. In this radio show Greg Watts, Emeritus Professor of Environmental Acoustics at the University of Bradford, will look at what you can do around your house and garden to make things more peaceful.

EXPERIMENT WITH MUSIC

LOCATION: Online (YouTube Premiere)
DATE AND TIME: 14.00, Monday 25 October
AGE: Suitable for families with children aged 5+

Are you interested in creating a household band? The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra team will take you on a journey of experimentation, turning everyday household items into exotic sounds. Gather your family and friends, join us on YouTube and discover how!

Pantasy Steel Pan Band

LOCATION: National Science and Media Museum
DATE AND TIME: 11.15, 12.15, 13.15, 14.15, Saturday 30 October
AGE: Suitable for all ages

Enjoy a mix of traditional Caribbean music and well-known favourites. These fun and upbeat musical performances are sure to get you dancing! Performances last 15 minutes.


Free drop-in activities

These activities will take place between 10.00 and 16.00 (unless otherwise stated) at the venues and dates listed below. You’re welcome to drop in and get involved!

At the museum

Don’t forget you’ll need to book a free admission ticket to visit the museum.

  • Sound and Environment Show and Tell (23 October): Come and speak to Peak Tuition Academy students about their amazing child-led research projects. Learn about Deafness, climate issues and what we can do to help. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Maths in Music (23 October): Find out about the maths in music with Explore Learning. Discover how you can use fractions to understand musical notes, then write your own piece of music. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Creative Junk Sounds Like... (23 October): Join 50 Things to Do Before You’re Five to discover what creative junk sounds like. Quiet or loud, slow or fast, come make a noise with us! Suitable for all ages.
  • How Big is Sound? (23–24 October): Join researchers from the University of Manchester to discover why size matters for noise reduction and how maths is helping to tackle noise pollution. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Sound On! (23–26 October): Have a look at a Miniature Acoustic Space Demo Kit with University of Bradford researcher Neha Sharma, and find out about her research into sound and sustainable materials. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Houdini’s Guide to Acoustics (23–26 October): Explore examples of sound technology including an ultrasound machine, a vibrating aeroplane and an interactive earthquake exhibit. See the magic of acoustics, Houdini style! Suitable for ages 7+.
  • What Noise Do Ghosts Make? (27 October): Do ghosts actually make a noise? Try some inventions people have created to try and ‘hear’ them, and have a go at being ghosts and ghostbusters! (Please note: no actual spirits will be used!) Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Shapes with Sound: From the Animal Kingdom to Medicine (27 October): Join the ultrasound team from the Leeds Biomedical Research Centre to learn about how animals use echolocation—and how this links to human medicine. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Seeing With Sound (27–30 October): Discover how scientists are using sound to detect microplastics in water. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Fun With Electronic Music (29 October): Have fun trying out electronic music equipment using Ableton Live, Push and Push 2 software and hardware. Record sounds, loop voices and create rhythms. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Musical Physics (30–31 October): Join the Institute of Physics for musical physics fun, from making a bowl of water sing and dance to creating instruments from lollipop sticks! Suitable for ages 5+.

The Broadway Bradford

  • Maths in Music (30 October): Find out about the maths in music with Explore Learning. Discover how you can use fractions to understand musical notes, then write your own piece of music. Suitable for ages 5+.

CITY PARK

  • Science of Sound Experiments (15.00–20.00, 23 October): Have you heard the Star Wars slinky? Join the museum’s team of Explainers for some fun sound experiments. Suitable for all ages.

Shine West Bowling

  • Maths in Music (26 October): Find out about the maths in music with Explore Learning. Discover how you can use fractions to understand musical notes, then write your own piece of music. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Creative Junk Sounds Like... (26 October): Join 50 Things to Do Before You’re Five to discover what creative junk sounds like. Quiet or loud, slow or fast, come make a noise with us! Suitable for all ages.

Laisterdyke Library

  • Maths in Music (28 October, 11.30–14.00): Find out about the maths in music with Explore Learning. Discover how you can use fractions to understand musical notes, then write your own piece of music. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Creative Junk Sounds Like... (28 October): Join 50 Things to Do Before You’re Five to discover what creative junk sounds like. Quiet or loud, slow or fast, come make a noise with us! Suitable for all ages.

Venue information

For more information on our partner venues, including directions and facilities, visit their websites:

RPO

Part of the Science Museum Group