Max Planck launches 2017 Science Meets Music

The Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI) has announced its 2017 Science Meets Music series, increasing the annual events from three per season to four. In its fourth year, the incredibly popular program, which features a scientific lecture accompanied by a classical music performance, has been praised as innovative, informative and creative. The events will be held monthly from January – April and will take place at The Benjamin School’s Benjamin Hall in Palm Beach Gardens.

Kwon Lecture 2016 3“We are pleased with the continued interest in the Science Meets Music series, so much so that we have expanded our offerings this season by adding an additional event,” said Dr. David Fitzpatrick, MPFI CEO and Scientific Director. “The Science Meets Music series offers a unique opportunity to explore similarities between the awe-inspiring attributes of both science and music while learning more about how scientists and musicians alike are breaking toward new frontiers. We look forward to sharing the vast talent and knowledge of MPFI and the Max Planck Society through this creative and inspired series.”

Dr. Jens C. Brüning, who joined Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research in February 2012, will kick off the series on Friday, January 20. Dr. Brüning will discuss Metabolic Mayhem: The brain’s role in metabolic health and disease. Dr. Brüning’s presentation will focus on the neuronal circuits that regulate metabolism and the ways they are disrupted in the development of diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. His discussion will be complimented by the musical talents of Zlatomir Fung, a seventeen-year-old internationally acclaimed cellist who has won numerous awards. Notable accomplishments include winning first prize at the 2016 Enescu Competition, the 2015 Johansen Competition, the 2014 Stulberg String Competition and the 29th Irving Klein Competition. His talents and notoriety have led to appearances on Performance Today and several appearances on NPR’s “From the Top” program.

The second Science Meets Music event will take place on February 15 with a lecture led by Emmanuelle Charpentier, PhD, Director of the Max Plank Institute for Infection Biology. Dr. Charpentier was awarded the 2015 Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences and was named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people in the American world in 2015 for her work in developing the revolutionary genome editing tool, CRISPR-Cas9. Dr. Charpentier will discuss this transformative technology and its rapidly growing applications in the world of science and medicine. Her discussion will be complimented by Emmanuel Ceysson, Principal Harp of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Presented by the Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach, Ceysson’s commitment to his instrument has earned him the highest international distinctions and, as a result, he is recognized as the first harpist to obtain awards at three major international events.

Additional speakers in the 2017 series include:

  • Iain Couzin, PhD, Director, Max Planck Institute of Ornithology

Friday, March 24, 2017

  • Samuel M. Young, Jr., PhD, Research Group Leader of the Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience Wednesday, April 19, 2017

All events in the series will take place at Benjamin Hall at The Benjamin Upper School, located at 4875 Grandiflora Road, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418. Doors for all events will open at 5:30 p.m. for a reception and the presentation and music performances will begin at 6:15 p.m.

Science Meets Music is a free event, however, seating is limited and reservations are required. For more information, please call 561-972-9027. For more information or to RSVP to the first 2017 Science Meets Music Series event on January 20, please visit