Live 'Star Trek' Show Launching Near NASA's Florida Spaceport

Aslice of "Star Trek's" final frontier will warp into the visitor's centerfor NASA's Kennedy Space Center spaceport in Florida this June with the worldpremiere of the interactive stage show STAR TREK LIVE.

Featuringlive actors on a set with giant screens and special effects, the program aimsto entertain and educate about life in space through the futuristic lens of thestarshipEnterprise at the non-profit Kennedy Space Center Visitor's Complex in CapeCanaveral, Fla., near NASA's space shuttle launch site.

The30-minute show's interactive storyline sets up the audience as cadets in theinaugural class at Starfleet Academy. While contending with an unwelcome visitfrom a timetraveling, renegade Romulan, audience members will discover the manychallenges of modern-day space travel, as well as how humans will continue to (boldly)go where no one has gone before.

Beamingup real space-age technology

One example is the fictional deflectorshields that "Star Trek's" ships rely on to scatter the rare, smallbut potentially hull-puncturing bits of dust and matter in their paths. Todemonstrate how much damage can be done, an aircannon will blast a piece of material through a sheet of aluminum right onstage.

This very-real threatof space debris ? a big concern of NASA's for the safety of astronauts andthe integrity of the International Space Station and satellites ? is just oneof many educational points that STAR TREK LIVE hopes to get across.

"We try to tie NASA in asmuch as humanly possible,"said Leonard Lipes, STAR TREK LIVE producer and productions managing directorof Mad Science Productions, which is creating the theatrical show under alicense from CBS Consumer Products.

The Apollo moon landings plus other aspectsof spaceflight of the past, present and future will get wrapped into whatpromises to be an exhilarating adventure as the audience saves the day, StarTrek-style, said Lipes.?

Trek-inspiredscience . . . and some cameos

In many ways, the "Star Trek"franchise has already presaged plenty of real-lifetechnology. An instance that the show touches on is modern cell phones,which mirror the then-futuristic, flip-phone communicators of the original1960s show chronicling the voyages of Captain Kirk and his crew.

Speaking of Kirk ? though Lipes cannot provide details at thispoint ? the swashbuckling starship commander and his stoic Vulcan counterpartSpock will make on-screen appearance at the show.

STARTREK LIVE will run five times daily in a 300-seat theater and comes included inregular admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. The worldwidedebut will be at the space center on June 11, 2010. 

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Adam Hadhazy
Contributing Writer

Adam Hadhazy is a contributing writer for Live Science and He often writes about physics, psychology, animal behavior and story topics in general that explore the blurring line between today's science fiction and tomorrow's science fact. Adam has a Master of Arts degree from the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute at New York University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston College. When not squeezing in reruns of Star Trek, Adam likes hurling a Frisbee or dining on spicy food. You can check out more of his work at