I’m probably very late with this post, as this play I’m going to talk about will premiere in only a few days. But I figured I should still post about it, as this is something that feels close to my heart.

And… there is a ticket giveaway!

The Catalyst, a theater group at the EPFL/UNIL, received a competitive grant last year from the Swiss National Science Foundation to create and perform a new play based on scientific research. This new play, called BLUE BUTTERFLY, will soon start in Geneva (29 April – 2 May) and then in Lausanne (8-10 May)


From the press release:

BLUE BUTTERFLY is the story of a young family grappling with demanding careers, an abnormal child, and fundamental forces of nature. Natalie and Simon are struggling scientists who have turned to TEDx talks and TV to thrust their research into the spotlight, while their brilliant but dangerous seven-year-old daughter gravitates towards her grandmother’s mystical beliefs. Their research into cancer, parasitism, and maternal-fetal immunology echoes the complex dynamics of a family blind to their own dysfunction. When life spirals into crisis, we must ask ourselves: what do we want to believe?

My husband is and I was* research scientists. Cancer? Parasitism? Yup, been there done that. I totally understand how demanding it can be, juggling bench work, research manuscripts, grant proposals, and family – why else would I quit?* But having an abnormal child, a dangerous daughter who has mystical beliefs? MYSTICAL BELIEFS! For scientist parents? Whoa! Betrayal at its best!

It gets better, as the actors are scientists themselves. My peers! I had probably met some of them in conferences (or when I come to pick up hubby at UNIL Génopode). I’m used to see scientists speaking on a stage, but in a play of this scale, this sounds awesome. And with the grant they received, they were able to hire theater professionals to up their game. Brilliant.

Just watch this teaser video on YouTube.

“I’ve never seen a piece like it”

Ailin Conant, Theater Director.

Interested to go? You should book your ticket ASAP as the performances in Lausanne are almost sold out. The ones in Geneva still have tickets as room capacity is larger. If you want to try your luck, you can win a pair of tickets (for the one in Lausanne on 10 May or one the shows in Geneva). As usual, you have to leave a comment, and let us know: “If you could be a scientist, what field of science would you choose? Or if you are a scientist, in what field do you work?” Don’t forget to let us know which venue you prefer (Lausanne or Geneva). Comments are accepted until Sunday 26 April 2015 at 11:59pm. Winner will be be picked randomly by random.org on Monday 27 April 2015. Winner will be announced on this page and contacted by email.


29 April – 2 May at the Théâtre Pitoëff, Genève
8 – 10 May at La Grange de Dorigny, Lausanne
The piece is performed in English (with surtitles in French)
Recommended for ages 13+

For show information and to book tickets visit bluebutterflyplay.ch

For coverage and interviews by medias, click here

Event page on facebook



*I have a PhD in Molecular Cellular Biology and had worked with aging, cancer, and stem cell research. I decided to leave after baby #2 in November 2011.