Birmingham Professor collaborates with dance company to bring the sounds of the stars to life

Humanhood dancers wrapped together to represent pulsations within a star

Professor of Astrophysics William Chaplin is collaborating with a forward-thinking dance company Humanhood, led by co-directors Rudi Cole and Julia Robert, which aims to capture the dynamics pulsations of the Sun and other stars in the Universe.

Professor of Astrophysics William Chaplin is collaborating with a forward-thinking dance company Humanhood, led by co directors Rudi Cole and Julia Robert, which aims to capture the dynamics pulsations of the Sun and other stars in the Universe.

Rudi and Julia recently visited Professor Chaplin and his research group in Birmingham to discuss their research into asteroseismology, the study of stars by observation of their natural resonances. On the same day Professor Chaplin went to Rudi and Julia's studio, to work on capturing the movement, energy and ‘sounds’ of the stars in their original dance performance. The day's interactions featured in a film (below) that accompanied a recent live performance by Humanhood at the prestigious Sadler’s Wells theatre in London.

This is one of several art and science collaborations Professor Chaplin is leading at the University. The collaboration with Humanhood was also the focus of a workshop organised by the University’s Institute of Advanced Studies, which aims to promote interdisciplinary research to address major cross-cutting themes.

Professor Chaplin and his colleagues at Birmingham are playing a leading role in In April, NASA launched the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) into space to survey the brightest stars across the sky to detect thousands of planets orbiting the stars, and to learn more about the stars themselves. Professor Bill Chaplin, is leading the international work that will characterise bright, newly discovered exoplanet host stars – and hence their planets – using asteroseismology.