Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience
Max Planck

Public Lecture Series

Thank you for your interest in our 2014 winter lecture series. The Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience launches a new season of its popular public lecture series in January – and in a joint effort with the American Friends of Kronberg Academy, adding delightful and intriguing performances by distinguished young American musicians.

Science Meets Music

Ingenuity and dedication: essential elements for both Science and Art. The musician and the scientist require them alike to break through towards new frontiers, where discipline, perfection and attention to the minutest details are just as important as curiosity, courage and inspiration.

Visionary scientists are at the origin of most ground-breaking discoveries. Creative and inspired musicians have led to many magnificent compositions and world-class musical performances throughout history.

For the first time, the Max Planck Society, one of the most prestigious and successful research institutions, and the Kronberg Academy, recognized as the preeminent string academy for the world's best young soloists, reach out together to the public, offering a new way to experience the encounter of science and music.

This event series will establish a new cultural highlight for all of those interested in science and music here in Florida. Joining brainpower and passion in a new edition of its well established public lectures series, the Max Planck Florida Institute is inviting the public to exciting science talks on "New discoveries in Brain Research" together with outstanding musical performances by some of the most talented young American musicians presented by the American Friends of Kronberg Academy.

Mapping the Brain’s Networks: Inviting the Public to Participate in Scientific Discovery

March 6, 2014

Dr. Moritz Helmstaedter is a neuroscientist dedicated to mapping connectomes: the complex networks of nerve cells in the brain. He is a Research Group Leader and Principle Investigator at the Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology in Germany.

Abtract: "Our brains are among the most complex systems in the universe. They can do amazing things like recognizing a friend, finding your car, or distinguishing a pine from an apple tree. The goal of our research is to understand how brains can do this. One of the core miracles about the nervous system is the enormously complex communication between millions of nerve cells. Nerve cells are highly interconnected: Each communicates with more than one thousand other nerve cells – more communication partners than most humans have! Mapping the interacting networks of nerve cells, untangling the wires in the brain, is the goal of “connectomics”. This lecture will present the latest breakthroughs in this new scientific field, going all the way from novel electron microscopes to image data analysis by computers and humans. To make data analysis feasible, we are developing science games with the intent of inviting the public to help with scientific discovery. With this, we are pushing the frontiers of neuroscience to an understanding of the stunning computers that are operating in our heads."

Admission is free but space is limited. Please RSVP to or 561-972-9027

Below is a calendar for the upcoming season along with locations.

  • January 7th, 2014
    Public Lecture & Concert
    Max Planck Florida Institute
    6:30 pm
    Speaker: Dr. David Fitzpatrick
    Music: American Friends of Kronberg Academy
  • January 29th, 2014
    Public Lecture & Concert
    Royal Poinciana Chapel
    6:30 pm
    Speaker: Dr. Ryohei Yasuda
    Music: American Friends of Kronberg Academy
  • February 18th, 2014
    Public Lecture
    Royal Poinciana Chapel
    6:30 pm
    Speaker: Dr. Bill Hansson
    Department of Evolutionary Neuroethology, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology
  • March 6th, 2014
    Public Lecture & Concert
    Max Planck Florida Institute
    6:30 pm
    Speaker: Dr. Moritz Helmstaedter
    Research Group leader and Principal Investigator at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Munich
    Music: American Friends of Kronberg Academy
  • March 25th, 2014 - Special Event
    Presented by the Society of the Four Arts
    2 Four Arts Plaza,
    Palm Beach, FL 33480
    6:00 pm
    "Get the Picture: The Art of Imaging and The Image of Art in Science"
    Speaker: Professor Peter Gruss
    President, Max Planck Society
    RSVP: 561.805.8562 or
    Cost: $10, no charge for Four Arts members

2013 Lecture topics were:

2012 Lecture topics were:

2011 Lecture topics were:


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Contact Information

Martha Hafele
Max Planck Florida Institute
One Max Planck Way
Jupiter, FL 33458
(561) 972-9027


Itamar Zorman is presented by The American Friends of Kronberg Academy as part of its mission to support exceptionally gifted American string players. Recently awarded the 2013 Avery Fisher Career Grant, violinist Itamar Zorman is the also the winner of the 2011 International Tchaikovsky Competition. Born in Tel-Aviv, Israel, in 1985 to a family of musicians, Itamar is currently a student of Christian Tetzlaff at The Kronberg Academy. He plays on a Pietro Guarneri violin from 1745 from the private collection of Yehuda Zisapel. (

Yoonie Han made her solo debut with the Seoul Philharmonic at age 13, and has since performed with the leading orchestras of the world (such as the Berlin Symphonic, Houston Symphony and many others). A First Prize winner of many renowned piano competitions, Yoonie was honored in 2009 with the Gawon Music Award as, "the most brilliant pianist aged 17 to 31 of any nationality who possesses the most promising potential for global prominence." Yoonie Han is a Steinway Artist. (


We express our gratitude to Becky and Jimmy Mayer for their generous gift of music.

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