​Moogfest is a synthesis of music, art and technology. The festival, which is May 19-22 in Durham, will feature tons of speakers, workshops and concerts.

Here’s our breakdown of 10 events you don’t want to miss.

  • Keynote addresses – The keynote speeches at Moogfest really set the tone for the festival, organizers said. Each delve into the future of creativity and transhumanism. On Friday at 2 p.m. at Carolina Theatre, Dr. Martine Rothblatt, creator of GeoStar satellite navigation and Sirius XM Radio, and founder and Chief executive officer of the multi-billion dollar biotech United Therapeutics, will speak about the future of humanity and how it applies to business, life and creativity. Rothblatt, a transgender woman, has helped preserve the consciousness of her wife in the form of a robot. Saturday’s keynote address, also at 2 p.m., from Jaron Lanier will delve into virtual reality and music.
  • Time Traveling with Hip Hop – Duke Professor Mark Anthony Neal joins the legendary GZA to discuss the role of hip hop in challenging our ideas of about science fiction, and its connection to future. The event is 4:30 p.m. Friday at Carolina Theatre.
  • Cyborg Pedicure – This unique event is Thursday at 4 p.m. at Durham Arts Council’s PSI Theatre. Neil Harbisson, a man with a cybernetic eye permanently attached to his head that allows him to hear the frequencies of colors through bone conduction, including infrareds and ultraviolets, will be painting Pau Riba’s toes. The cybernetic eye will amplify the sound of the colors on Pau’s nails. Pau sings in concert with the sound of the colors on his toe nails.
  • Hyperinstruments, Robotic Operas and City Symphonies – Composer and inventor Tod Machover describes the past, present and (potential) future of his “Opera of the Future” group at the MIT Media Lab. His group explores concepts and techniques to help advance the future of musical composition, performance, learning and expression. See him Sunday 10:30 a.m. at Durham Arts Council’s PSI Theatre.
  • Founding the Future Of – This workshop, held at 2 p.m. Friday at Duke I&E, will feature innovators in North Carolina. These companies and entrepreneurs will be showing their products or technology, then sitting down for a conversation about building their companies in the Triangle region.
  • Realiti: Inside the Music of Grimes – This installation is part of Microsoft’s ongoing Music x Tech program. It offers fans a unique chance to remix the track “Realiti” by festival headliner Grimes. Redefining the music experience, the installation invites visitors to manipulate their surroundings as they explore an ever-evolving world. It will be located at 21c’s museum hotel’s gallery.
  • Polinator Synthesizer – This installation at American Tobacco Campus is a generative soundscape, reacting in real time to the bees inside the Burt’s Bees Observation Hive. Microphones and optical sensors detect bees moving in and out. Capacitive sensors detect presence and movement of the bees. Temperature and humidity sensors track subtle variations in the hive near the queen. All that data is interpreted into a droning ambient bee-inspired soundscape.
  • Donald Buchla instruments – See a selection of this synth-legend’s instruments and memorabilia – the most complete collection ever assembled – in the foyer of the Durham Arts Council throughout the festival.
  • DJ Lance Rock and more free events ATC – Moogfest celebrates young fans of electronic music, and invites both adults and children to experiment with new sounds Saturday at American Tobacco Campus. DJ Lance Rock and Yo Gabba Gabba! will provide an afternoon of music and conversation, featuring DJ Nanny Cantaloupe, Bootsy Collins, Dorit Chrysler, Kate Stone, Malcolm Mooney, Mark Mothersbaugh and Van Partible.
  • Moogfest Reggae Soundsystem Party – Bull McCabe’s will hosts this free, outdoor party Saturday in celebration of dub reggae and homemade sound system culture, featuring DJs and music from key practitioners in the field.

Get the full Moogfest schedule, buy tickets and find out more about free events on Moogfest’s website.

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