Want to see what social justice looks like on a 55-foot, 360-degree screen? The Gheens Science Hall and Rauch Planetarium at the University of Louisville is introducing a new show that does exactly that.
“Empowerment” kicks off Feb. 17-26 with a focus on Black History Month and civil rights. University and community leaders will give post-screening discussions as an integral part of the series.
The free, public series explores social justice through current events and how those events — and the people involved — are shaping history through action.
“The videos are adapted to the planetarium’s projection system to give viewers an incredible, immersive experience,” said Paula McGuffey, who manages planetarium operations. “The impact is truly astounding. We plan to follow each viewing with a discussion on how we can all make a difference in our world.”
McGuffey said the idea for the new show was born after the planetarium offered something similar last November during an LGBTQ conference and learned the videos were the most highly-rated session of the conference.
Shows are 6 p.m. Feb. 17, 18 and 24, and 2 p.m. Feb. 18, 19, 25 and 26.
McGuffey said show times were chosen to make it easy for people to also see the documentary “I Am Not Your Negro” at the nearby Speed Cinema at the Speed Art Museum. The documentary airs an hour after the planetarium’s shows and costs $7 to $9.
The clips that will be shown in the series are public but have been adapted for the planetarium screen.