92Y’s SECOND ANNUAL 7 DAYS OF GENIUS FESTIVAL: VENTURE INTO THE EXTRAORDINARY #7DaysofGenius Rapper Baba Brinkman | Cardinal Timothy Dolan | Brian Greene | Walter Isaacson | Michio Kaku | Scott Barry Kaufman | Thomas Piketty | Gail Saltz

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Rapper Baba Brinkman | Cardinal Timothy Dolan | Brian Greene | Walter Isaacson | Michio Kaku | Scott Barry Kaufman | Thomas Piketty | Gail Saltz


www.92Y.org/genius | #7DaysofGenius


92nd Street Y’s 7 Days of Genius Festival: Venture into the Extraordinary brings together luminaries from the worlds of science, technology, religion, art, music, film, literature and business to consider, de-mystify and unravel all things “genius.” Events take place at 92Y from March 1-8 (see below) and other venues around the world, including the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York City, Sixth & I Historic Synagogue in Washington, DC, the Innovate Kenya Genius Festival presented with Global Minimum in Nairobi Kenya, and the Whizin Center for Continuing Education at American Jewish University in Los Angeles. The festival also features free, live webcasts; interactive online content (videos, quizzes and more); competitions; and programs to help educators bring STEM into the classroom.


7 Days of Genius Programming


Special Pre-Genius Week event:

Mon, Feb 16, 8 pm, tickets from $30


The extraordinary resilience of the Jewish people—in the face of adversity through every generation since Moses—gives power and resonance to their collective vision, and provides the key to Jewish identity and sense of purpose. Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Emeritus Chief Rabbi of Britain and the Commonwealth and current professor at New York University, Yeshiva University and King’s College London and Simon Schama, author of The Story of the Jews, dig deep into Jewish history to explore and explain the genius of Jewish survival, resilience, security, prosperity and leadership.


Sun, Mar 1, 7:30 pm, tickets from $30

The Future of Life on Earth with Jeffrey Sachs, Seth Baum, Max Tegmark

What can we do today to help prepare future generations for the life on earth that awaits them? Learn what positive steps can be taken now to adapt to changing populations and climates, and see how we can build and envision a positive human future.


Sun, Mar 1, 8 pm, tickets from $30


Science rapper Baba Brinkman (Rap Guide to Evolution) teams up with neuroscientist Dr. Heather Berlin, neuropsychologist Rex Jung and cognitive psychologist and science writer Scott Barry Kaufman to explore the brain basis of improvisation, mixing freestyle rap with the latest research.


Mon, Mar 2, 12 noon, tickets from $24

Psychobiography with Dr. Gail Saltz: ON THE GENIUS OF LEONARDO da VINCI

Leonardo da Vinci—artist, scientist, anatomist, architect, engineer, inventor and more—was the quintessential and original Renaissance man.  Join Dr. Gail Saltz in conversation with art historian Robert Simon, whose involvement in the discovery of da Vinci’s lost painting, Salvator Mundi, was the culmination of a life-long study of the artist.


Mon, Mar 2, 8:15 pm, tickets from $42


Science writer and futurist Michio Kaku (The Future of the Mind) looks at current research into the mind that will allow us to upload our brains onto a computer – neuron for neuron, and send our consciousness across the universe, among other things.


Tue, Mar 3, 8:15 pm, tickets from $61


Cardinal Timothy Dolan, archbishop of New York, is joined by Rabbi Peter J. Rubinstein, 92Y’s director of Jewish community and the Bronfman Center for Jewish Life, to explore the genius of religion and faith, and their role as sources of morality and moral behavior.


Wed, Mar 4, 6:30 pm, tickets from $30

REINING IN ATTENTION with Linda Stone, Howard Nusbaum, and Winifred Gallagher

Where has our attention gone and how can we be more present and focused? Learn about why we’re going in so many directions at once and what can be done to achieve the ever-elusive “flow” that we need and crave.

Wed, Mar 4, 8 pm, tickets from $45


French economist Thomas Piketty, author of the magnum opus Capital in the Twenty-First Century, joins Nobel laureates Paul Krugman and Joseph Stiglitz (The Great Divide) to discuss the genius of economics.


Wed, Mar 4, 8:15 pm, tickets from $25


MacArthur Fellowships have bestowed the label of “genius” on a select few in the dance world. What kind of questions and problems does this bring up? Four past Fellows, each with an utterly unique vision within the performing arts, discusses their approach to making work: Theatre/dance director and image-maker Martha Clarke, choreographer/improviser Eiko Otake, juggler/director Michael Moschen, and “action maverick” Elizabeth Streb. Wendy Perron, author of Through the Eyes of a Dancer, will pose questions like, What is the source of your “genius”? Do you perceive yourself differently after being anointed with that label? Does “genius” exist in dancers as well as in choreographers? Is the word better used to describe an aspect of a work rather than a person?


Thu, Mar 5, 5 pm, $10


For middle and high school educators

The fair showcases a wide range of resources and products presented by leading organizations working in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to enhance and empower learning in the classroom. Attendees receive a complimentary copy of 92Y’s Genius, Then, Now and Tomorrow STEM literacy curriculum.  Partners and exhibitors include Discovery Education, Girls Who Code, New York Hall of Science and more!


Thu, Mar 5, 8:15 pm, $30

Wired Communities and the Genius of Technology

Join a vibrant discussion about how technology and innovation is transforming our cities and communities—and how we should seize today’s opportunities to improve lives. Rachel Haot, Chief Digital Officer and Deputy Secretary for Technology, New York State, Minerva Tantoco, Chief Technology Officer of New York City, and Rachel Sklar, journalist and creator of an innovative online women’s community, explore how the most ambitious, even intellectually radical or contrarian ideas, can lead our communities into the future.

Fri, Mar 6, 7:30 pm, tickets from $30

Co-presented with World Science Festival

Renowned theoretical physicist and bestselling author of The Elegant Universe Brian Greene says that after 13.8 billion years, we might be on the brink of unraveling the mystery of the Big Bang, thanks to millennia of scientific progress and the work of geniuses ranging from Galileo to Hawking. See how we got from star-gazing to what we know today.


Sat, Mar 7, 7 pm, tickets from $30

The Genius of Good and Evil

It’s easy to identify history’s evil geniuses—the Hitlers and Stalins—but who are the moral geniuses among us? And what does it take to be one? How can science and religion help us do great work in the world—and stop us from using our singular human intelligence for ill? Get to the very heart of right and wrong when Professor Michael Shermer, editor of Skeptic magazine and author of The Moral Arc, join in conversation with Rabbi Geoffrey A. Mitelman, founding director of Sinai and Synapses.

Sun, Mar 8, 5 pm, tickets from $33


Walter Isaacson, CEO of the Aspen Institute, former chairman of CNN, former managing editor of Time, and author of The Innovators, discusses the people who created the computer and the internet – those one-in-a-million geniuses whose work has impacted every aspect of our lives.


Sun, Mar 8, 8 pm, tickets from $30


Renowned psychoanalyst, author and “TODAY” show contributor Dr. Gail Saltz explores the question of whether there is a link between creativity and mental illness with Professors Dean Simonton, PhD, and James Kaufman, MD, and the author of A Beautiful Mind, Sylvia Nassir, PhD.


Sun, Mar 8, 8 pm, tickets from $38


A Conversation with Wolf Hall’s Hilary Mantel and Director Jeremy Herrin

Dame Hilary Mantel is the two-time winner of the Man Booker Prize for her best-selling novels, Wolf Hall, and its sequel, Bring Up the Bodies—an unprecedented achievement.

The Royal Shakespeare Company recently adapted Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies for the stage to colossal critical acclaim; the production opens on Broadway in April. There is also a BBC/Masterpiece six-part adaption of the novels, which will be broadcast on PBS in 2015.




Deadline: February 13

Details: www.92Y.org/genius/competition


For Innovators and Entrepreneurs: The Genius Start Up Competition

Do you have a start-up idea that could impact communities, environments and cultures in an innovative way that will change people’s lives for the better?


For Innovators and Entrepreneurs:The Genius of Bettering the World Contest

Do you have a design idea that addresses a global challenge like clean energy, education or health?


For Teams of High-School Students: Design for Good Competition

Can you come up with an innovative design idea that addresses a Grand Challenge identified in the national strategy for American Innovation, like clean energy, education or health?


For Students Ages 10-17: It Took a Genius Video Contest

Make a video about a challenge facing a genius, how challenge was overcome, and what the impact of their solution is on our society today.



7 Days of Genius receives generous support from individuals and organizations, including the John Templeton Foundation.  MSNBC is the 7 Days of Genius Marquee Media Partner.


Content partners include Big Think, Medium, National Geographic Live, mental_floss, and NYU Skirball Center.  The initial line-up of organizations participating in education programming planned in conjunction with 7 Days of Genius are Discovery Education, Flatiron School, Girls Who Code, The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Liberty Science Center, MadaTech – The Israel National Museum of Science, Technology & Space, Maker State, Museum of Math, New York Hall of Science, NYC FIRST, and The Pixel Academy.


As the Festival’s marquee media partner, MSNBC is presenting prime-time programming related to the topic of genius during the week of March 1-8 and offers streamed content from select events on MSNBC.com. The cable news network is also joining the conversation on genius with Twitter chats, behind the scenes video, images and social content using #7DaysofGenius.



92nd Street Y is a world-class, nonprofit cultural and community center that fosters the mental, physical and spiritual health of people throughout their lives, offering: wide-ranging conversations with the world’s best minds; an outstanding range of programming in the performing, visual and literary arts; fitness and sports programs; and activities for children and families. 92Y is reimagining what it means to be a community center in the digital age with initiatives like the award-winning #GivingTuesday, launched by 92Y in 2012 and now recognized across the US and in a growing number of regions worldwide as a day to celebrate and promote giving. These kinds of initiatives are transforming the way people share ideas and translate them into action both locally and around the world. More than 300,000 people visit 92Y annually; millions more participate in 92Y’s digital and online initiatives. A proudly Jewish institution, 92Y embraces its Jewish heritage and welcomes people of all backgrounds and perspectives. For more information, visit www.92Y.org.






92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10128

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