Updated 8:47 AM EST, Fri, Mar 05, 2021

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An Awesome Opera is Taking Place Inside CERN's Large Hadron Collider


CERN's Large Hadron Collider

CERN's Large Hadron Collider is the world's largest particle accelerator and the biggest machine on Earth. It examines the world's tiniest particles and figures out overarching questions like how the Universe came to be.

Currently, it's also the setting for uncovering the mysteries of the human heart via an ambitious multimedia film project called "Symmetry".

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It's an operatic sci-fi dance performance based on the work being performed at CERN. "Symmetry" blends digital art, dance and physics to create rumination on the philosophical mysteries swirling around in our universe.

The opera, performed inside CERN, follows a physicist on his journey to uncover the smallest particle in existence. The film touches on love, philosophy and the nature of life in a surprisingly digestible format.

"I didn't want to make a documentary to explain or understand modern physics in general, but rather interpret the complex material this institution is presenting," said director Ruben van Leer to The Creators Project.

It follows Lukas, played by the film's choreographer Lukas Timulak, a CERN physicist, hard at work using the LHC to search for the smallest particle in existence, when a ghostly woman played by soprano Claron McFadden appears.

She asks him if he loves the particle more than he loves himself, and, if he could, would he become one with the particle.

As Lukas increasingly tries to focus on his work, Claron's message becomes more insistent as she carries him through time in search of answers. She tears him away from the timelessness of physics and points him towards the timelessness of love and music.

As he travels through time and inside himself, the claustrophobic, machine setting of the Large Hadron Collider gives way to the bare, open, natural setting of Bolivia's Salar de Uyuni, the world's largest salt flat.

"Symmetry" will premiere in the Amsterdam EYE film museum on March 14 as part of the Cinedans film festival.

It will also be shown at the NewScientist CERN festival in Pakhuis de Zwijger Amsterdam at 7pm on March 18.

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