Special Collections 'Satellites' opened to full house

Special Collections 'Satellites' opened to full house

Dec. 9, 2022

On Monday, Dec. 5, Natalie Songer's live, multi-media performance, "Satellites," made its U.S. debut to a full house in Special Collections. 

Songer, who is based in the UK, wrote and performed "Satellites," about the work of her great-great-uncle, Tom Gehrels, a professor of planetary sciences and astronomy at the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and the Department of Planetary Sciences from 1961 to 2011.

Songer traveled to Tucson from the UK in 2018 to spend a week researching Gehrels with the help of Special Collections. "Satellites" adeptly and creatively weaves multiple storylines and timelines. Many of Songer's extended family members were in the audience, including Gehrel's widow who had a speaking part in the show.

Originally from the Netherlands, Gehrels immigrated to the U.S. where he met his wife and began his new life. Just a few months before his passing, in April 2011, he was honored by the university for his 50 years of service as an academic.

You can view the Tom Gehrels Papers in Special Collections.