Who’s Who

Please enjoy this never-yet-complete list of 2019 Ig Nobel ignitaries, literati, glitterati, pseudo-intellectuals, quasi-pseudo-intellectuals, cogno-intellectuals and assorted others who in some way are/were assisting in bringing the Ceremony into reality.

For a list of Nobel laureates, 24/7 Lecturers, and past Ig Nobel Prize winners who will also be part of this, see the 2019 ceremony web page.

(NOTE: ** indicates name is/was/will be misspelled)

Marc AbrahamsMarc Abrahams (Producer/ Director, Master of Ceremonies, Writer) founded the Ig Nobel Prize ceremony. He also edits the magazine Annals of Improbable Research, and writes newspaper columns and the librettos for Ig Nobel mini-operas, including this year’s opera, and now and then a book. David KesslerDavid “DK” Kessler (Co-Producer, Stage Manager) is knowledgeable about theater, logistics, Scotland, sea chanteys, philosophy, and whisky. www.ouphrontis.com
Robin AbrahamsRobin Abrahams (Lurking Presence) writes the popular “Miss Conduct” social advice column for the Boston Globe Sunday magazine and blogs at robinabrahams.com. She is the author of Miss Conduct’s Mind Over Manners. Maria FerranteMaria Ferrante (Opera Soloist & Music Director) enjoys an active career as recording artist, recitalist, orchestral soloist, and chamber musician, in the United States and abroad. This is her ninth year starring in an Ig Nobel opera premiere.
Dany AdamsDany Adams (Diplomat) is Associate Research Professor at the Tufts Center for Regenerative and Developmental Biology. She gave one of the first 24/7 Lectures, which culminated in a seven-word definition of ‘biology’: “If it can get infected, it’s biology.” John JarchoJohn Jarcho (Chorus) is a Cardiologist and an Editor at the New England Journal of Medicine.
Richard Baguley (Webmaster, Social Media Butterfly Catcher) is a fellow who writes about all sorts of technology and science. Susan KanySusan Kany (Diplomat) has, for more than 20 years, been perfecting her diplomatic skills within Harvard’s administration.
John Barrett (Referee) is a retired educator who stays active as a baseball umpire and soccer referee for high school and private leagues in Eastern Massachusetts. MelAlice Shirrell Kaswell (Writer) is a staff writer for the Annals of Improbable Research. This is her (at least) 27th Ig.
Jackie Baum (Party Host) has from early on been creating delicious party foods and atmosphere for the new winners. That and other deliciousness is available to the world, at Trillfoods. Bruce KoplanBruce Koplan (Opera Bassist) is a Cardiac Electro-physiologist at Brigham & Women’s Hospital.
Jeremy BellJeremy John Bell (NSFW Indicator) was the official Hasty Pudding Piper in the 1990s. He will lead the pre-show procession of the BSE with the bagpipes, but will not actually play them— the OED definition of a gentleman. He is also the author of a book on William Hogarth. Emma LiddelEmma Liddell (Minordomo)
Mike Benveniste (Photographer) Michele LiguoriMichele Liguori (Portaborse, Assistant Stage Manager) is an avid board gamer, Scrabble player, and cat-herder. She loves tacos and anagrams.
Patty BianchetPatty Bianchet (Chorus)
Social butterfly.
Julia LunettaJulia Lunetta (Minordomo) is a 17-year veteran minordomo. In addition to being a professional geek, she is also a semi-professional actress and musician, and an amateur human. When not shuttling people around the Sanders stage, she sings around NYC with Three Dollar Bill, a queer a cappella cabaret group.
George BiblerGeorge Bibler (Chorus) sings bass with the Westford chorus, plays and restores upright basses, and tests homes for radon gas. MelLois Malone (Artwork & Logos) drew “The Stinker”, the logo of the Annals of Improbable Research and of the Ig Nobel ceremony. Formerly at MIT, she now paints, sculpts, and designs houses in the mountains of New Mexico.
James BredtDr. Jim Bredt (Human Spotlight) was a co-founder of Z Corporation and co-inventor of full-color 3D Printing. He taught freshman chemistry at MIT and drew a cartoon textbook on thermodynamics, and invented the concept of the human spotlight. He currently works as a materials scientist for 1366 Technologies, a solar startup in Lexington. Thomas MichelDr. Thomas Michel (Opera Impresario, Founder and maestro of Boston Squeezebox Ensemble) is a Cardiologist at Brigham & Women’s Hospital, a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. and is half of the busking duo, “Yesterday’s Bait”. He has been in many Igs.
Linda BrennanLinda Brennan (Stagehand) is a stagehand/ manager in the Boston burlesque scene, a stagehand and performer in 2 Rocky Horror casts since 1996, and wears her geek with pride. MelClarissa Murphy (Ig Informal Lectures Coordinator) is Manager of the MIT Press Bookstore.
Bethany BrookshireBethany Brookshire (Chorus) is a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT. She counts licking a banana slug, going 48 hours without coffee and performing in the Ig Nobels among the many things she has done for the sake of science. David NickersonDavid Nickerson (Sound) spends his time growing his son TJ, and his company Bay State Events, in that order. He’s been working on the Igs since 2010.
Mel
Howard Cannon (Photographer)
John OverholtJohn Overholt (On Stage Tweeter) is Curator of Early Modern Rare Books and Manuscripts at Harvard’s Houghton Library, an enthusiastic Twitterer, and admitted watcher of professional golf.
Trevor ChamberlainTrevor Chamberlain (Camera Crew) is a Boston based director, cinematographer, and editor with over a decade of experience in the film/video production industry. He has been on the Ig camera crew since 2007. Bruce PetschekBruce Petschek (Videographer) is a freelance videographer. His production company, Seven Generations Video, has been videotaping the Igs for as long as anyone can remember and he is the chief editor of the Ig Nobel collection series on YouTube. His three children have all grown up working on the Ig Nobel video production crew since they were 6 years old and despite this formative experience they have all grown into fairly well-adjusted adults.
MelHeidi Clark (Green Room Oracle). Alexander J.H. PhillipsAlex J.H. Phillips (Stagehand) last moved items and people around the Ig stage in 2007. We welcome his return.
Stephanie Clayman (Improbable Executive Assistant) is a professional actress, teacher, and coach. She was raised in a family of scientists, and is delighted to have found the Igs, where art, science, and humor all coexist in delightful chaos. Karen PryorKaren Pryor (Pre-Opera Speaker, Chorus) is the author of numerous scientific papers including the foundational paper on animal creativity. One of her 16 books (so far) is “Don’t Shoot The Dog” which introduced clicker training to a world-wide audience. Karen has trained everything from dolphins to dogs to doctors. She is an experienced chorus member (alto) and enjoys ballroom dancing.
Kristen ConnollyKristen Connolly (Chorus) enjoys her job in genomics & data visualization. She also uses every bit of available vacation time to travel. Gus RancatoreGus Rancatore (Diplomat) is the proprietor of Toscanini’s Ice Cream. In 2007 he invented a new ice cream flavor to honor Mayu Yamamoto, who that year won the Ig Nobel Prize in chemistry for discovering how to extract vanillin from cow dung.
Jean CummingsJean Cummings (Chorus) is an Education Journalist, who once played Jabba The Hutt in a Star Wars opera. But her appearance tonight is what will embarrass her 16-year-old daughter. Dan RichardsDan Richards (Stagehand).
MelFrank “Barefoot” Cunningham (Sound Recording) has been recording sound, barefoot, at the Ig since some time in the 20th century. Katrina RosenbergKatrina Rosenberg (Human Spotlight) is a Primary Care Nurse at Fenway Health, and an amateur wooden spoon carver. All her sisters are former Miss Sweetie Poos. This is her manyth Ig.
Daniel DavisDaniel Davis (Opera Drill-er, Prop Maker) is a science demonstrator at Harvard University who is often found in a Faraday cage at the Boston Museum of Science. He firmly believes that experiencing phenomena is central to learning AND that Fulminologists are Physicists too! Sylvia RosenbergSylvia Rosenberg (Minordomo) is a former Miss Sweetie Poo, and veteran of many Ig Nobel ceremonies.
Chris DeterChris Deter (Major-Minordomo) is a thespian trapped inside a systems analyst’s body, who likes The Great Outdoors, playing video games, and thinking about outer space. Louise SaccoLouise Sacco (Grand Panjandrum of the Delegations) is co-founder and Permanent Acting Interim Executive Director of the Museum of Bad Art. She is also an usher at Red Sox games in Fenway Park.
Gary DryfoosGary Dryfoos (Majordomo) is a scholar, a gentleman, and a majordomo. His majordomic qualifications include intensive specialized training, and owning his own tuxedo. This is his 27th Ig. Don SchechterDon Schechter (Broadcast Crew) is the founder of Charles River Media Group and a part-time lecturer at Tufts University in Film. His secretive past involves music composition and theremin performance.
Jim EakinsJim Eakins (Stagehand) teaches Physics at Wentworth Institute of Technology, and once successfully spoke (Jabba-the-) Hutt-ese to a stranger on the streeets of Jilin, China. Abby SchiffAbby Schiff (Chorus) is an MD-PhD student at Harvard Medical School. She has played clarinet and sung in previous Ig operas.
Stanley EigenStanley Eigen (Lurking Presence) has been with the Igs since the beginning. In addition to serving as Commutative Editor for the magazine Annals of Improbable Research, he is a math professor at Northeastern University (and yes, his name really is Eigen). Lizhou ShaLizhou Sha (Opera Violinist, Chorus) works at MIT for NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite mission. He’s also a ham radio operator.
Alexey EliseevAlexey Eliseev (Photographer) takes photographs, discreetly. Pranav ShahPranav Shah (Opera Wrangler) is a peripatetic virologist who uses very big microscopes to visualize very small virus particles.
Maria EliseevMaria Eliseeva (Human Curtain Rod) speaks Russian and English, works as a patent and trademark attorney and enjoys devoting some time to singing and playing the piano. Ted SharpeTed Sharpe (Chorus) is a Computational Biologist at the Broad Institute and is half of the busking duo, Yesterday’s Bait.
Lisa FerrettiLisa Ferretti (Chorus) is an LMT and MSW. She volunteers at Fenway Park with Fenway Force, and sings in an a cappella trio to be named later. Cody SignoreCody Signore (Camera Crew) is an Assistant Director and Cinematographer with Charles River Media Group and has worked on commercials, narratives, documentary films and a few of his own feature films involving cowboys and bounty hunters.
Roksi FreemanRoksi Freeman (Minordomo) is a social cognitive scientist and freelance writer who also builds espresso machines and practices 14th century German style fencing. MelMiles Smith (Sound Recording) is a freelance audio engineer based in the Boston area, is currently on staff at WGBH Radio, is chief engineer for the Spanish Beisbol Network, works with “This American Life”, and has had a hand in three Grammy-nominated albums. Most important, he has been involved in many, many Igs.
MelStefanie Friedhoff (Press Liaison) Quentin SmithQuentin Smith (Director of Improbable Engineering) has been playing with wires down the street at MIT for the past many years, first as an MIT undergrad, then as a Google person, (where he built a digital waterfall, among other things).
Holly GettingsHolly Gettings (Lighting & Technology, Special Thanks) has for many years been artfully directing photons towards their destined spots on the the Ig Nobel stage. Geri SullivanGeri Sullivan (Artwork & Logos, IgBill Design and Layout, Slide Show) is a graphic designer at her own firm, PROmote Communications, and is the design and layout director of the Annals of Improbable Research.
Bob GilmoreBob Gilmore (Slide Show). 2019 is Bob’s first Ig, so we’re still learning about him. We do know that if we say we need a photo of Roy’s broom… Sonya TaaffeSonya Taaffe (Chorus) reads dead languages, tells living stories, and was recently Poet Laureate of NecronomiCon 2019.
Jean Berko GleasonJean Berko Gleason (Welcome Welcome Speaker, Goodbye Goodbye Speaker) is professor emerita of psychology at Boston University. She is the inventor of the Wug Test. She owns a tiara. Persis ThorndikePersis Thorndike (Asst to D.K., Diplomat) is a professional Field Interviewer and Data Collector. She is also a planner/coordinator for several science fiction conventions and enjoys wearing clothes with all the colors of the rainbow.
Steve GolsonSteve Golson (Sweeper) is a freelance integrated circuit designer, who studied geophysics at MIT, and co-designed the video game Ms. Pac-Man. He enjoys astrophotography and rifle shooting. Peaco ToddPeaco Todd (Minordomo) works as a political columnist/cartoonist and professor. Her work can be found at
peacotoons.com and
porkbarrelcomix.com.
Terry GolsonTerry Golson (Sweeper) is an animal behaviorist, horsewoman, author of cookbooks and children’s books, and once appeared on Martha Stewart with a trained chicken. Fred TsaiFred Tsai (Chorus) is a doctor, scientist, and singer. Occasionally all at the same time.
Ivan GusevIvan Gusev (Chorus) is a prize-winning pianist from Karaganda, Kazakhstan. This is his second Ig ceremony. Pooja UsgaonkarPooja Usgaonkar (Minordomo) is a software engineer and musician interested in local sustainability.
Jan HadlandJan Hadland (Opera Soloist) sings with the jazz group “Just In Time”. Marsha WarrenMarsha Warren (Chorus) Works at MIT in the Office of the Provost.
Hunter HeinlenHunter Heinlen (Lighting & Technology) is a gentleman of mystery, despite and because of his easy and frequent familiarity with brilliant lighting. He knows how to work diplomatically with dim bulbs. Corky WhiteCorky White (Diplomat) is a food anthropologist, based at Boston University. She presently is engaged in research on urban social spaces and social change in Japan, particularly on the history of the cafe. She is perhaps the world’s greatest professional scholar of Japanese coffee culture.
Barbara Allen HillBarbara Allen Hill (Chorus) performs in numerous ensembles and has appeared as a soloist with Masterworks Chorale, Musica Sacra, and The Boston Cecilia. She also serves on the board of the Society for Historically Informed Performance (SoHIP) in Boston, and helps to produce their annual summer concert series. Eric WorkmanEric Workman (Prize Maker, Props and Scenery Maker, Performing Props Master) creates unusual things at Boston’s Museum of Science. He has been designing and building Ig Nobel Prizes for well over a decade.
Karen HopkinKaren Hopkin (Announcer, Opera Narrator), biochemist-turned-science writer, announces the opera, the Win-a-Date contest, and all sorts of things. At the 2004 Ig, Hopkin led the musical tribute to Daisuke Inoue, the inventor of Karaoke, who was awarded that year’s peace prize. She is co-author of the textbook Essential Cell Biology. In her spare time, Hopkin bakes pies and collects the signatures of Nobel Laureates on a 1950s-style autograph dog. This is her 27th Ig (at least). Ben WurgaftBen Wurgaft (Diplomat) is a noted, and constantly note-taking intellectual.
MelChristopher Hopkin (pre-show habits demonstrator) Yulia YunYulia Yun (Opera Pianist) is a first prize winner at the Uzbekistan National Piano Competition and has since studied piano with Sergei Polusmiak, Eda Mazo Shlyam, and Ludmilla Lifson. She holds degrees in Music and French.
MelJoe Wrinn (press wrangler) MelDariusz Jemielniak (press wrangler)
MelShuji Omata (press wrangler)
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!