The Force is definitely strong with NASA astronaut Jessica Meir, who recently played the "Star Wars" theme aboard the International Space Station.
Meir used the same piccolo that she once played as a student at Caribou High School in Maine, she explained to the audience on NASA TV while floating near the famous plant-growth experiment on the orbiting complex.
"@Astro_Jessica has been dreaming of going to space since she was 5 years old," NASA explained on Twitter, where the video was posted Oct. 29. "Today, she spoke to students from her old hometown — Caribou, Maine, and told them that even after being on the @Space_Station for a month, it's still difficult to believe her dream has come true!"
Astronauts are often fans of many science fiction franchises, ranging from "Star Trek" (in which several real-life astronauts have appeared) to "Firefly" (astronaut Steve Swanson is particularly fond of that TV series). "Star Wars" has undergone a resurgence in popularity, with the release of several new feature films in recent years. The newest, "The Rise of Skywalker," will be released in December.
NASA says that a variety of musical instruments have flown into space, including a keyboard, a flute, several guitars, a saxophone and even a didgeridoo, the Australian aboriginal wind instrument.
Instruments are not only fun to play in space, but they may also boost astronauts' psychological health. NASA looks for ways to keep its spacefarers entertained in orbit, including giving them free time every day to read, talk with family members, play instruments or surf the (slow) internet available on the space station.
- Space Jams! Astronauts and Cosmonauts Rock Out at the International Space Station
- Watch an Astronaut Rock Out with The Tragically Hip from Space!
- Astronauts Just Watched 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' in Space!