Particle Detectives


“Particle Detectives” has been developed by SonS France Ambassador Michael Gregory  in collaboration with CERN’s Science Gateway to create a lightweight, portable version of their new science shows. Taking significant inspiration from Anja Horvat’s “Seeing the Invisible” show and following the model of Michael’s first show “Experiments – World Tour”  – finding the best experiments from inspiring educators around the world, the show itself is a model of the international collaboration that goes on in particle physics research.

The audience is invited to become “detectives” on the hunt for particles. We’ll start off our quest with a look at how science can help us see things that are otherwise invisible to the naked eye, like air, sound and different kinds of light. From there we’ll zoom in smaller and smaller to have an idea of how scientists look for the particles that make up the universe.

This show is portable and can be performed for audiences of any size and demographic, typically science festivals, museums and schools. Modifications can be made as necessary for different age/level of audience and for various physical constraints. When on a large stage, standard audio-visual requirements would be a plus (microphone & speaker, camera & projector), and translation would come in handy if the audience doesn’t speak English, French, Spanish or Italian. The show is designed to use fairly simple materials, which should either fit easily into a backpack or be able to easily sourced locally.

Since the first performance in September 2023, versions of Particle Detectives have been performed in Kazakhstan, Italy, Serbia, Montenegro and France, including the national Science on Stage Festivals in Kazakhstan, Serbia and France where Michael has also served on the juries to select the national delegations. Through October, further performances are planned in Bulgaria and Spain.

Michael is currently preparing a script and experiment guide, which are planned to be published with open copyright and freely available for anyone to use for their own low-cost particle physics science shows. For more information or to request performances, training or advice please get in touch.

Air Vortex at ProNRG Fest, SonS Kazakhstan
Credit – Nasko Stamenov, SonS Bulgaria Ambassador

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