What Physical Reality Has Taught Me

June 28, 2022DR Koncerthuset Copenhagen
Physicalreality 1600x740
Doors open: 19:00
Start programme: 20:00
DR Koncerthuset
Ørestads Blvd. 13

Science & Cocktails is proud to present a special episode with physics Nobel prize winner Frank Wilczek, who will take us on a tour through modern physics, theology and philosophy and present his new book "Fundamentals: Ten Keys to Reality" where he draws striking lessons about the workings of our universe. A event integrated in the Jazz festival which counts with the excellent jazz of Hess/AC/Hess Spacelab Trio.

Some of the most profound messages to emerge from scientific exploration of the physical world concern issues that were once thought to be philosophical or even theological. Frank Wilczek will discuss three issues that he calls cosmic humility, cosmic chutzpah, complementarity but will also briefly describe other aspects of the physical world that he considers “Keys to Reality”.

You can prepare yourself for a tour through modern physics about space, time, the quantum world, complexity, the universe and its cosmology, information and all the laws of nature that we know of. All this in the light of the current state of our scientific development. What makes up the universe and how does it actually work?

He will also go deep into philosophy and ask questions such as:

Is cosmic humility in order? Human lives are very short on cosmic scales, and human bodies are very small.

Is cosmic self-respect in order, too? But by other objective measures we are amply gifted. Our bodies are large enough to support awesome complexity, and we have time for a few billion independent thoughts.

Is the world comprehensible? Profound understanding of physical reality has given us wealth and power undreamed of by our recent ancestors; and much more is on offer.

What is complementarity? Complementarity is the insight that answering different sorts of questions about something might require using radically different, apparently incompatible concepts. Complementarity is provably essential in quantum theory and can be mind-expanding for life in general.

Is progress in fundamental physics slowing down? Good answers about fundamental questions are leading us to grander but more challenging questions.

Event held in English with the generous support of the Novo Nordisk Foundation.


  • 20:00–   20:45
    Hess/AC/Hess Spacelab– 
  • 21:15–   22:15
    Frank Wilczek– 
  • 22:15–   00:00

Talk by

Frank Wilczek

Frank Wilczek is a theoretical physicist, author, and intellectual adventurer. He has received many prizes for his work, including a Nobel Prize in Physics.

Frank has made seminal contributions to fundamental particle physics, cosmology and the physics of materials. His current theoretical research includes work on Axions, Anyons, and Time Crystals. These are concepts in physics which he named and pioneered. Each has become a major focus of research world-wide.

In recent years Frank has become fascinated with prospects for expanding perception (especially color perception) through technology. He is developing hardware and software tools for this.

Frank has authored several well-known books and writes a monthly "Wilczek's Universe" feature for the Wall Street Journal. His latest book, “Fundamentals: Ten Keys to Reality”, distils the most profound and mind-expanding insights of modern science, and explores their implications for questions that are usually considered philosophical or even theological. Early reviews have been enthusiastic, including this from the New York Times: “Whether or not you’re accustomed reading physics for pleasure, the Nobel Laureate Frank Wilczek’s *Fundamentals* might be the perfect book for the winter of this plague year ... Wilczek writes with breathtaking economy and clarity, and his pleasure in his subject is palpable . . .”

Wilczek received a B.S. at the University of Chicago in 1970, and a PhD in physics at Princeton University in 1974. Currently he is the Herman Feshbach professor of physics at the MIT; Founding Director of the T. D. Lee Institute and Chief Scientist at Wilczek Quantum Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University; Distinguished Professor at Arizona State University; and Professor at Stockholm University.


Music by

Hess/AC/Hess Spacelab

The deeply interplaying and trance-inducing super trio, with Anders AC Christensen's iconic bass, Mikkel Hess 'innovative drums and Nikolaj Hess' virtuoso and warming piano playing. Spacelab has existed since the three, now international, Danish musicians, started playing together in their childhood, in Jutland.

Their latest release as a trio, “SPACELAB Live in London”, was recorded by the BBC in the international Pizza Express Jazz Club. The trio is described as excellently communicating and cinematic Nordic jazz, ‘Contemporary jazz at it’s finest’ and life-affirming original music that tells of intense and immersive live performances.

They each have their own individual projects, styles and sound, but meet in the Hess / AC / Hess Spacelab Trio where they dive into a musical connection that must be experienced.


Live act by


Copyflex was born in the fjords of Norway on April 1st. 1977, relocating to Copenhagen in 1997. Here he first worked as a stockbroker for a boiler room turned legit and briefly for a local financial scandals socialite, all while slowly getting a foothold in the city's music scene.

Copyflex is also the founder of tropical bass pioneer band Copia Doble Systema and a part of space bass outfit Alo Wala. Copyflex also works with the french actionist artist COLONEL / Thierry Geoffroy as an producer, representative and musician.

Copyflex’ gig record is impressive. He’s played places like reggae bars and boat clubs in Hanoi, Filipino sports arenas, pirate parties in defunkt cinemas, ghetto parties and clubs in Cairo, on the Ipanema beach and in favelas in Rio de Janeiro, at a mall club in Caracas, Copenhagen Distortion’s frenzied street parties, illegal bars in London, Roskilde Festival (also at the camping raves), in Rome’s dirty underground, Berlin's mad squats and posh venues, south american radio shows, college fiestas, Venice Biennial, Miami Art Basel, Istanbul Biennale, on more beaches, plenty of boats and countless basements.

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