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Sounds like fun

On March 27, just in time for Spring Break, ScienceWorks opens its latest exhibit "Noise!" Featuring exhibits on sound, music and hearing, this latest creation is sure to knock your socks off.

Creating experiences from the "can you hear me now" Scream Chamber to the "good vibrations" of the Dancing Sand Plates, the exhibits take a playful look at the physics of sound waves as well as how music and sound affects our mood.

The first of the exhibits will premiere on Tuesday, March 27. While regular hours are Wednesday through Sunday, the museum will open on the special Spring Break Tuesday. Throughout the next few months additional sound-related exhibits will continue to transform the ScienceWorks. "Noise!" Has been created with support from The Carpenter Foundation, the PGE Foundation and Town and Country Chevrolet Oldsmobile.

Executive Director Chris Hostetler notes that exhibit developers and community members have been working with the idea of sound exhibits over the last year. Last year an initial survey was conducted with museum visitors to ask "What would you like to know about sound?"

"One of the most inspiring answers was from a young visitor who said 'I want to know what sound looks like,'" said Hostetler. "We decided that would be a great challenge."

As a result, exhibit developers and community members came together to create a wide range of sound experiences. Good Vibrations and the Dancing Sand give visitors a way to "see" sound waves in some pretty unusual ways. The Whirling Sound explores the "Doppler Effect" - why does sound change when something gets closer or farther away? Unconventional musical instruments such as the Musical Wrenches, a Theremin and Pipe Organ let visitors make their own music.

One of the coolest experiences offered by "Noise!" is the Scream Chamber - a sound-proof booth you enter"&

166;and scream as loud as you can. When you leave the booth, people who have monitored your scream by a decibel meter can tell you how loud is your scream. Find out who the loudest member of your family really is! A special area for small children allows them to make that "ruckus" perhaps they can't make at home.

To celebrate the opening, ScienceWorks is pleased to welcome internationally-known guest artist Todd Barton. Barton, the Resident Composer and Music Director for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, will be presenting programs for both kids and adults. The first performance is on Thursday, March 29 at 7 p.m. in the museum's Sci Theater. The second performance is on Saturday, April — at 2 p.m.

On March 29 at 7 p.m, Barton presents, "The Music of Todd Barton: From Shakespeare to the Human Genome." After four decades of exploration Todd Barton is still delving deeply into the ever-expanding frontiers of musical expression: from his DNA derived Genome Music to his innovative scores for plays at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival; from performances of Zen Shakuhachi Meditation Music to avant-garde music for electronic synthesizers and computers; from performing with luminaries of jazz and poetry to lecturing on music and composition from the Middle Ages to the 21st Century.

On Saturday, April — at 2 p.m. , Barton brings "t&

178;" featuring performances by Barton and Terry Longshore. t&

178; explores the endless frontiers of sonic space, freely going where the sound and rhythm leads. Internationally known Yamaha Performing Artist: percussionist, Terry Longshore (and Director of Percussion Studies at SOU and Chair of the Music Dept.) performs on a wide variety of percussion instruments, from tablas to handsonic - Barton's electronic percussion complements Terry's percussion with a wide variety of electronic synthesizers and the Japanese shakuhachi flute.

Special presentations throughout the spring include a presentation on computers and music by SOU professor Pete Nordquist on April 5 at 7 p.m. and Antique Instruments from the Shuman Collection on May — at 7 p.m.

On Saturday, May 12 at 2 p.m ScienceWorks is pleased to welcome the exciting "Stomp!" style percussion performance from the group "D'msta." This wild group features students from Yreka High School using unconventional drums such as garbage cans and plastic buckets. This energetic performance is exciting to watch and captivating for young and old alike.

Then on Saturday, May 19 from 12 to 4 p.m. DJ Jahfirm aka David Tourzan presents "Exploring Digital Sound." Check out what it takes to be a DJ and try mixing your own sounds. Learn about the science of acoustics and experiment with the different things you can change about a noise; volume, tempo, pitch, and frequency.

More special events and sound exhibits will be presented this summer, including some great outdoor experience such as the Giant Whisper Dishes.

Special evening and weekend "Noise!" programs are free with museum admission ScienceWorks is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is $7.50 for adults, $5 for children 2 to 12 and free for members and children under 2. ScienceWorks is located at 1500 East Main near Walker in Ashland. For more information on events, directions, membership and volunteer opportunities call 482-6767 or visit .