TEASER: Ground Control: An Opera in Space

On 6th September 2012, after two months of intense training, the International Space Orchestra performed in front of the largest windtunnel in the world at NASA Ames Research Center. Inspired by our desire to understand the universe, and to rocket-propel our souls to further galaxies, Ground Control: An Opera in Space is the world first orchestra composed uniquely of space scientists from NASA Ames Research Center, the SETI Institute, Singularity University and International Space University.

The International Space Orchestra:

Blending space science, planet-poking and bluegrass-playing spacecraft operators, the world’s first orchestra composed of space scientists – the International Space Orchestra - is coming together to perform Ground Control: An Opera in Space.

Inspired by our desire to understand the universe, and to rocket-propel our souls to further galaxies, Ground Control: An Opera in Space is performed by the International Space Orchestra, an assembly of star-spangled space scientists from NASA Ames, Singularity University, International Space University and the SETI Institute. It features original music by Arthur Jeffes of Penguin Café and music written by Damon Albarn (Blur, Gorillaz), singer Bobby Womack and producer Richard Russell; and Japanese superstar and Otamatone inventor, Maywa Denki. With lyrics by science fiction author Bruce Sterling and writer Jasmina Tesanovic.

In this tangential reality, your Flight Controller conducts arias and the Payload Officer works a baritone sax, while the Capsule Communicator plays the triangle. Merging science, technology, design and opera, Ground-Control: An Opera in Space, aims to reach the final frontier!

The International Space Orchestra, directed and created by Nelly Ben Hayoun, is an experiential and hybrid research laboratory, where space scientists have been invited to implement, deconstruct, perform, sing, mix, modify, and design musical acts in control rooms. It is a provocation to action: a call to imagine and disrupt future human relations to science; to adapt science to our creative needs.



A film and concept by Nelly Ben Hayoun
Teaser music by Arthur Jeffes, Auraura Choralis

Director and creator: Nelly Ben Hayoun
Director Assistant: Phoebe Greenwood
Evan Price, Music Director and Conductor
Mike Smith, Music Arranger and Conductor, The Bravest Man in the Universe
Eric Tuan, Choir Conductor

A NASA Ames educational outreach activity

Ground Control: An Opera in Space, COMING SOON
With music by Damon Albarn, Bobby Womack, Harold Payne and Richard Russell,
Arthur Jeffes of Penguin Café,
Maywa Denki
Evan Price,
and Lyrics by Bruce Sterling and Jasmina Tesanovic

With kind support from XL recordings and Edition Penguin Cafe Ltd.
Many Thanks to NASA Ames Research Center
© Nelly Ben Hayoun