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Zachary Quinto + Heather Berlin

The Brain on Spirituality

Sunday, March 6, 2016
7:00 PM–8:30 PM
Sold Out

Actor Zachary Quinto learns from neuroscientist Heather Berlin how different brain states can alter our subjective experiences. Spirituality, consciousness, shamanism—this conversation will attempt to distinguish what is objectively “real” and what is just a fabrication of our various brain states.

About the Speakers

Zachary Quinto received his BFA from the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama in Pittsburgh in 1999. After moving to Los Angeles and breaking into television, he appeared as computer analyst Adam Kaufman on 24, Tori Spelling’s flamboyant best friend on so noTORIous, and Sylar the super powered psychopathic serial killer on Heroes. In 2009 and 2013 Quinto appeared as Spock in the blockbuster reboot of the Star Trek franchise, directed by JJ Abrams. A third film is due out next year. In 2013 Quinto played the role of Tom Wingfield in the American Repertory Theatre’s production of The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams, a role he reprised on Broadway in 2014. In February 2016 he will appear in the New York premiere of MCC Theater’s Smokefall.

Heather Berlin is a cognitive neuroscientist and assistant professor of psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. She explores interactions of the human brain and mind with the goal of contributing to improved treatment of impulsive and compulsive psychiatric disorders. She is also interested in the neural basis of consciousness, dynamic unconscious processes, and creativity.

Berlin is a committee member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Science and Entertainment Exchange, host of the CUNY TV/PBS series Science Goes to the Movies, and the Discovery Channel series Superhuman Showdown. She’s been in two critically acclaimed shows on the neuroscience of improvisation at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has made numerous media appearances on the BBC, History Channel, StarTalk with Neil deGrasse Tyson, One World with Deepak Chopra, and TEDx.


Brainwave is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

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