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Laser light shows back at Flandrau

Those who appreciate an altered consciousness rejoice. Laser light shows are returning to Flandrau planetarium after 10 years.

The shows at the University of Arizona facility will feature Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" on Friday and Saturday nights beginning July 16.

The planetarium, renamed UA Science: Flandrau, brought back the shows to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the laser.

"Tucson has never had the opportunity to see laser shows of this quality," said Michael Magee, technical director of Flandrau's laser light shows and planetarium director when the shows were last offered in 2000. "People who remember going to laser light shows here are in for a real treat."

In a release, Flandrau invited Tucsonans "to revisit memories of laser light images dancing inside Flandrau's planetarium dome to the soundtrack of Pink Floyd's 'Dark Side of the Moon,' as well as introduce a new generation to this beautiful, abstract art form. The laser light show's rich, vibrant colors, unique imagery, and immersive audio engulf visitors in what can only be described as '3D for your mind.'":

Beginning with the fall semester, visitors will also have a rare opportunity to explore the history of the laser and the physics behind this amazing and versatile technology in Flandrau's expansive exhibits hall. The story of the laser will be presented through a unique historical laser display created by the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE), featuring over 130 lasers and backdrops describing their history and many applications. A series of lectures and interactive floor demonstrations will give the public an opportunity to hear from the experts about how lasers play a significant role in the science being done at the University of Arizona in fields as diverse as optical sciences, medicine, molecular and cellular biology, astronomy and more.

"The Flandrau exhibits and events will not merely demonstrate how curiosity-driven science can lead to profound and transformational changes," said Dr. Pierre Meystre, Regents' Professor of Physics and Optical Sciences. "They will also highlight the central role played by Arizona and Tucson in these developments, with many of the central players, including Nobel Laureates Nicolaas Bloembergen and Willis Lamb, laser pioneers Peter Franken, Marlan Scully, Stephen Jacobs, and many others having chosen to make Tucson and The University of Arizona their home."

Flandrau will also be offering two educational laser shows: "Legends of the Night Sky" (constellations Perseus and Andromeda) and "Paradigm Shift" (science and mythology).

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UA Science: Flandrauf

Where & when

Monday through Friday (daytime)

  • Educational Laser Shows: "Legends of the Night Sky" and "Paradigm Shift"

Fridays

  • 9, 10, 11 p.m. – Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon"

Saturdays

  • 9, 10, 11 p.m. – Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon"

Thursdays (Family Night – beginning July 22)

  • 7, 8 p.m. – Family friendly music laser light show
  • (Family-oriented exhibit hall activities and family discount of $7.50 for adults, $5 for children)

Laser light show admission

  • (includes exhibits)
  • Adults: $10
  • Children (4 to 15 years old): $7.50
  • Children under 4 years old: Free
  • Cat Card Holders and Arizona college students (with ID): $7.50

Exhibit admission

  • Adults: $7.50
  • Children (4 to 15 years old): $5
  • Children under 4 years old: Free
  • Cat Card Holders: $2 off
  • Arizona college students (with ID): $2

Buy tickets online at www.flandrau.org

Parking

UA Science: Flandrau is located on the University of Arizona campus on the northeast corner of Cherry Avenue and University Boulevard. Free parking is available on the University of Arizona campus on weekends, and after 5 PM Fridays in metered spaces and many parking lots. Parking is also available in the UA Cherry Avenue Garage.