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Marquette Wire

Bringing sexy back with science

"Sexy Back" revolves around the search for the Higgs boson particle. Photo courtesy of Alverno Presents.

Sexy and science usually don’t end up in a sentence together, but Alverno Presents’ upcoming show “Sexy Results: Cedar Block’s Dig for the Higgs and How the Quest was Won” hopes to entertain and titillate in ways only science can.

“Cedar Block is an organization consisting of me curating one-night events involving local artists, musicians, filmmakers, programmers and assorted geniuses, creating new work within certain established guardrails,” said Brent Gohde, the creator and entity behind Cedar Block. “Then we pull them together in a room and have a party.”

Gohde, working under the moniker Cedar Block, started out running small science fairs for adults in 1995. The events were so successful that the Milwaukee Art Museum invited him to create shows for its featured exhibitions. The shows usually included local artists and attracted new crowds to the museum. Over the years, Cedar Block has put on six shows for the MAM, which have featured dozens of local artists.

“Sexy Results” will be Cedar Block’s first official stage performance and is a part of Alverno College’s Alverno Presents series.

The show revolves around the Higgs boson particle, a particle thought to be the building block to the entire universe. The search for this elusive speck of mass has been going on for about 30 years, and Gohde, with the help of his accompanying performers, hopes to wrap the mystery up at Turner Hall Ballroom this weekend. If all else fails, they at least want to put on a good show.

“I want to share my excitement over this work in a language that more people will understand: music, laughter, video games, storytelling,” Gohde said. “Hopefully, it will inspire others to find out more and value science more.”

Bringing sexy back in the form of physics and potentially changing modern day science is a daunting task. To attempt this challenge, Cedar Block enlisted the help of musicians Lisa Gatewood, IfIHadaHiFi, Joe Kirchling, Lunaversol9, Picobots, Roseneau/Warchol and Nick Sanborn, along with artist Ashley Morgan, comedian and writer Tim Higgins and Bacon Interactive’s nifty art installations.

“I’ve worked with most of the performers before in past Cedar Block shows,” Gohde said. “I’ve been lucky to have met so many members of the creative community and have opportunities to give them an audience at the art museum or Turner Hall.”

Though the majority of “Sexy Results” will be performed on stage like a traditional concert, audiences can look forward to interactive elements — like a Higgs-inspired video game and photo booth — happening throughout the venue before and after the show, as well as during intermission.

“Sexy Results” overall is a big step for Cedar Block. Not only is it the first stage performance Gohde has done, but it’s also the first show he’s put on in three years.

The concept behind “Sexy Results” might be a little unusual for some, but it makes perfect sense for Gohde and all of those involved. Artists and scientists both need dedication and passion for what they do, especially since their interests often involve a lot of trial and error.

“Sexy Results” is about experiencing science and the arts in a different way.

“It’s nothing like any other show because all the music and art was created just for Saturday night,” Gohde said. “When it’s over, it’s likely it won’t ever be performed again like this, and it will never be on YouTube. Plus, you can play a particle physics video game.”

“Alverno Presents Sexy Results: Cedar Block’s Dig for the Higgs and How the Quest was Won”  will be held Saturday, Feb. 18th at 8 p.m. in Turner Hall Ballroom. Doors open at 7 p.m.. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online at, or at the Turner Hall box office.

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