FameLab Oxford

We organise the regional heats and final of FameLab UK – a brilliant competition to find the new voices of science, technology, engineering and maths. The most engaging, creative and daring individuals in science battle to surprise and fascinate a general public audience with unbelievable facts and unforgettable performances. They are also watched by three judges and have just three minutes to impress on a STEM topic of their choice. Powerpoint slides and lecture notes are not allowed! Oxford competitors have a great record of making it to the final (and doing really well.) In 2018 Lucy Guille, a junior doctor based in Bristol, came through the Oxford Heats to become overall FameLab UK winner, and in 2016 our heats generated both the eventual winner Kyle Evans and the runner-up Jase Taylor.

The judges will be looking for the 3C’s when watching the performances – content, clarity and charisma.

Content – Does the talk have structure and a creative narrative?

Clarity – How does the contestant bring the topic to life and make it easily understandable?

Charisma – How does the contestant interact with their audience (body language, eye contact, delivery?)

The competition launches in November with heats and a regional final in Spring and the UK final in June.

Top Tips from 2018 Oxford and UK overall winner, Lucy Guile

  •  If you use a prop, make sure it’s big enough for the audience to see. Familiar objects used in unexpected ways can help people engage with your talk
  • Make sure your talk comfortably fits into the three minute limit – allowing yourself to speak a comfortable pace is more valuable than shoehorning in one more point!
  • Something that you genuinely find interesting and are excited to talk about

Can’t wait to hear this year’s contestants!


“Taking part in FameLab was great fun. One of the most valuable aspects was receiving training and feedback from the judges. Since taking part in FameLab, I have gone on to develop and perform a solo science comedy show for the Edinburgh Fringe, with invaluable support from Science Oxford.”
Fran Day


‘Naked Mathematician’ Tom Crawford performed his 3 minutes in a toga..  I think the experience of being on stage in front of a live audience really is invaluable when it comes to ‘performing maths’ – and I say ‘performing’ because that’s now how I see it. Before I would be giving a lecture or a talk about maths, but now it’s a full-on choreographed performance, and I think taking part in FameLab really helped me to understand that.” Read our Q&A here about what he got out of the whole experience and what he’s up to now..


Watch our previous FameLab Oxford contestants on YouTube and read our 2017 FameLab Blog


FameLab 2019

The 2019 Oxford heats will be held at St Aldates Tavern in Oxford on the 12th & 13th February and the regional final at the Wig and Pen, George Street, Oxford on 8th March 2019. It’s an amazing competition and encourage everyone who has ever thought of doing some science performance to have a go – including past entrants who’d like to give FameLab another go.

For more information and to sign up, follow the link to Cheltenham Festivals website here.

“I entered the Oxford Famelab heat with the goal of sharing some of this learning and demonstrating that a career in science can take you anywhere.” Lucy Guile, 2018 regional Oxford and UK winner

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