Science Meets Music | Watching the Brain in Action

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015, 6:00 PM
Royal Poincianna Chapel, Palm Beach
Jason Kerr, PhD
Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience
(561) 972-9027

Event Information

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.

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 this new edition of its well established public lectures series, the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience 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 musicians performing today.

Watching the Brain in Action

Jason Kerr, PhD, Director, Center of Advanced European Studies and Research

Jason Kerr
Arguably, understanding how the brain operates is one of the biggest challenges that faces science, but what is being done to advance our understanding? Although we have started gathering a vast amount of detailed information about the components that make up the whole brain, one of the next challenges is to place all of this information back into the context of the behaving animal: For it is how the vast interconnected circuits of the brain are used by the animal that will ultimately lead to the greatest understanding of brain function. This lecture will focus on the work Dr. Kerr focused on understanding how mammals use their vision to make decisions and the underlying neuronal mechanisms. Dr. Kerr will discuss how different animals have developed different strategies for using their two eyes to make informed decisions about the world around them and present how it is possible measure activity from the brain using miniaturized microscopes while the animal is freely moving.

Dr. Jason Kerr is a scientific member of the Max Planck Society and a Scientific Director of center of advanced European studies and research (caesar) in Bonn, Germany. The long-term goal of Dr Kerr’s research is to understand how mammals use their vision to make decisions and the neurobiological mechanisms that underlie this process.


Francesca Alfano | Vocalist

Francesca Alfano
From West Palm Beach, Florida, 14 year old Francesca Alfano is a talented vocalist who has performed at many large venues, including The Great Hall of The Library of Congress. As a dancer, she studied at the world famous La Scala dance school in Italy and has been a soloist in many South Florida dance productions.

Francesca is a high honors student and was selected for the Duke University TIP Program. She is passionate about Science, was awarded the Science Prize for her grade last year, and plans to pursue a double major in Science and the Fine Arts in college. She is fluent in Italian, conversational in Spanish, and presently studying Mandarin as her fourth language. She is a certified scuba diver, and plays the piano. She has a dog named Bella and a pig named Beau.

Francesca will perform O mio Babbino caro from Gianni Schicchi (composer, Giaccomo Puccini) and Art is calling for me from The Enchantress (composer, Victor Herbert).


The lecture is sponsored by Citi Private Bank.


Time: Doors Open at 5:30 pm, Lecture Begins Promptly at 6:00 pm
Place: Royal Poinciana Chapel, Palm Beach

Free Admission | Limited Seating | Reservations Required

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