SKDC delivers tempting portrait of Gravity Fields Festival
A taster of Grantham's Gravity Fields Festival took to the stage at London's Portrait Gallery with an oscillating cycle wheel, a boomerang, a Shakespearian actor and one of the country's top scientists.
As a festival partner, the Portrait Gallery was South Kesteven District Council's choice to gather partners and festival contributors for the official launch of its eight day September programme of Newton-related science, arts, drama, poetry, writing, heritage and street theatre.
Australian Hugh Hunt, sure to be a huge festival draw, showed how gyroscopic forces brought even an indoor boomerang back to his hand and spun himself in different directions with an oscillating cycle wheel.
Award-winning actor Jack Klaff is premiering a one-man Newton play at the festival. "My challenge is to try and be this man and to bring to life the bravery of someone prepared to take a bodkin to his own eye to see how it worked," he said.
And Professor Valerie Gibson, UK spokesperson from the European nuclear research institute in Geneva, promised major scientific announcements in September.
"All my life I have followed one of the great scientists of our time, from my birthplace of Grantham to Trinity College in Cambridge and now my work in Geneva following some of Newton's greatest achievements. My office even overlooks Rue Newton!" she said
The National Portrait Gallery is staging a special week-long Isaac Newton and the Age of Scientific Discovery exhibition at Belton House, including a portrait of the great man.
SKDC Leader Cllr Linda Neal said: "We are very proud that the man considered by many to be the greatest and most influential scientist who ever lived was born, educated and did some of his most incisive thinking in Grantham.
"Many people only associate Grantham with Margaret Thatcher. But as well as providing the first woman prime minster the town also produced the first diesel engine, the first tractor and was the first town in England to have female police officers. So perhaps it was Sir Isaac who laid the foundations for us to be leaders in so many areas."
Council Chief Executive Beverly Agass added: "It is perhaps long overdue that Newton's life and work should be celebrated, and our festival will do just that. As a Council we are committed to what I am sure will be a wonderful week."
With many events free to attend, detailed information and tickets are available on www.gravityfields.co.uk
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