What happened when MIT decided to stage a pageant? Forget your memories of dowdy high school parades and off-tune solos—MIT re-conceived the notion of pageant. This spring, to celebrate a century in Cambridge, MIT marked the move from Boston with light, color, arts, and elements of MIT’s history.
Consider MIT’s motto. Mens and Manus, for example, came to life and debated which approach has been more significant to science, technology, and solving big problems.
Also in the cast, a shiny mobile robot, voiced by Ray Magliozzi ’72 of NPR’s Car Talk fame, explained that robots, too, can get tired (it’s called metal fatigue). President L. Rafael Reif took a selfie with Mens and Manus and then accepted a facetime request [57:00] from the International Space Station from astronaut Tim Kopra who sent greetings from the crew from 235,000 Smoots above Earth.
Performances included MIT Bhangra’s folk dance from Punjab, the hip-hop dance team Mocha Moves, and the renowned dance theater troupe Pilobolus, music from the Eviyan Quartet, and LED-lit umbrellas created by the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.
A parade of puppets representing influential MIT alumni and community members included William Hewlett ’36, co-founder of Hewlett-Packard, the multi-national information technology corporation.