What is Infinity? And is it Real?

August 12, 2021DR Koncerthuset Copenhagen
Doors open: 19:00
Start programme: 19:30
DR Koncerthuset
Ørestads Blvd. 13

Science & Cocktails is proud to present a unique episode with Edward Frenkel - mathematics superstar and acclaimed author of the book "Love and Math". Edward Frenkel will dive into the Infinity while you are served with exquisite cocktails and listen to the sound of Basker Hval.

At first glance, everything around us is finite: the number of minutes in a year (or a lifetime); of grains of sand on all beaches on Earth; even of all atoms in the observed Universe.

Is human experience inherently limited, or is there something in our lives that defies the confines of the finite? Is there such a thing as the Infinite? If so, what is it, and in what sense is it real? Are we related to something Infinite or not?

Carl Jung called the last question the most decisive and telling question of a human life. There are many ways to approach it. In this talk, Edward Frenkel will present the mathematical perspective — logical and cerebral, yet fascinating and full of surprises. In this day and age, mathematics gives us perhaps the quickest way to taste the Infinite, he says.

A rigorous mathematical theory of Infinity was initiated by Georg Cantor at the end of the XIXth century, and has become a cornerstone of modern mathematics. One of the gems of this theory is Cantor’s diagonal argument showing that Infinity comes in different sizes. Edward Frenkel, who has a reputation as “people's mathematician,” will give us glimpses of this spellbinding theory without overloading it with details, and with the help of zesty cocktails.

In fact, according to him, the polarity of the finite and the Infinite can be seen through the prism of the Complementarity Principle proposed by the great Copenhagener, Niels Bohr, in his interpretation of Quantum Mechanics.

Before the talk, Basker Hval will play an energetic hybrid of darksynth, electronic rock and synthwave with pulsating bass lines, playful arpeggiators and hard drumbeats, creating a hard-hitting instrumental sound universe that gets the pulse up and sets the imagination free. After the talk, you will hear a DJ set specially made for this episode by Mikkel Aksglæde - the front man of Basker Hval - filled with sounds to please your ears and your cocktails.

Event held in English. Corona pass required. Tickets available here.

This event has the generous support of the Novo Nordisk Foundation.

Talk by

Edward Frenkel

Edward Frenkel is a professor of mathematics at University of California, Berkeley, member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, winner of the Hermann Weyl Prize in mathematical physics, and author of the international bestseller “Love and Math” which has been published in 19 languages.


Music by

Basker Hval

With inspiration from the film and the game industry grandiose storytelling Basker Hval's musical DNA consists of one further development away from the retro aesthetics known from acts such as Carpenter Brut, Pertubator and Dance With the Dead.

Basker Hval is drummer Mikkel Aksglæde's solo project. He is educated from the Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen and has previously played with e.g. Aksglæde, The Oceans and Kara Moon.

As a live act, Basker Hval performs with three musicians who armed with synthesizers, bass and drums move and capture the audience with their hard hitting attitude.

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