Pittsburgh Travel Blog› entry 9 of 10 › view all entries
*Since a visit to the Carnegie Science Center on its own would make a fun trip to Pittsburgh, I am going to focus on the parts of this visit related to the special event.
Sometime over the last two years I discovered that the Carnegie Science Center has evening events about once a month just for adults. The chance to check out the museum without feeling weird about playing with the interactive exhibits while kids are also waiting (or jostling) for their turn seemed like a great idea. However, it took me awhile to find a night that fit with my schedule and motivation (Pittsburgh's North Shore is over an hour, a bit of a drive after a long full week of work).
I met Mike just inside the museum for our casual date just after the evening for the adults started. We spent about two hours wandering up to the top floor and checking out exhibits along the way. We had been given cards to get stamped at the various dance related displays that had been added on each level but we didn't do many of those on this first walk-through. I did get the chance to hold some toe shoes that had been cut or torn to show what they are made of. Besides the pretty satin, their structure comes from cardboard that has been soaked with glue that the dancers says is the same type of industrial glue used on jetplanes!
After Mike left a little after eight to go to his bowling league, I struck out on my own.
On the Science Stage a male and female dancer showed us several minutes of barre exercises followed by some floor exercises as the one teacher explaining what they were doing. Despite all my years of dance as a kid, I had never thought about the progression of the warm ups from little movements to big. They finished with a contemporary pas de deux with the male dancer and another female. On our way out to get our stamp we had to say what a duet in dance was called and the pair ahead of me had a lot of difficulty with the pronounciation; I was good, thank you high school French!
Next up was the Ballet Selfie which would be a photo with one of the dancers in a Sugar Plum Fairy costume and pointe shoes but first you had to take a little lesson at the barre.
I then hiked back up to the third floor to another science lab where we learned that ballerinas were physicists in order to make their bodies complete all the moves. We learned about how equal and opposite forces affect jumps, how spotting inhibits the inner ear from causing balance issues, and how the center of gravity affects balance (I was an audience volunteer for this one).
I wrapped up my evening by turning in my stamped card for a chance at winning tickets to one of their shows although I think I will try to make one anyway this year :)