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Pages of Stars
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Pages of Stars Contest



Observatory Serafino Zani

The Astronomical Observatory Serafino Zani and the Mobile Planetarium Committee are seeking submissions for the competition, "Pages of Stars.”

The goal of this competition is a to build a collection of short audio clips (maximum 3-5 minutes each) that can easily be shared among planetarians using mp3 files.

Planetarian colleagues from around the world are invited to prepare a short text, in English, that can be read under a planetarium dome.

The text can be:

  • an astronomical and scientific commentary
  • a classical Greek (or another culture’s) sky story
  • an original story or a poem (any kind of topic) with some astronomical details or with an event that happens under the night sky (including the name of some stars or constellations or other sky objects visible with the naked eye

The author (or a collaborator of the author) must read the text aloud, in English, and record this story as an mp3 file. A committee, selected by the IPS Portable Planetarium Committee in collaboration with the Astronomical Observatory Serafino Zani, will select the winners, and the text of the best entry will be published in the March Planetarian, while the three best works will be made available on this Pages of Stars webpage. 

The winner(s) will also receive an Award Certificate on the occasion of the Day of Planetaria, which occurs annually in March.

Enter Now:  

Participants must send, before December 31, an application that includes:

  1. The written text of the commentary, story or poem,
  2. The audio registration as an mp3 file (without music) and 
  3. Information about the author, including full name, complete address, year of birth, and a short curriculum vitae, as well as the name(s) of any collaborator(s). 
  4. A short statement, signed, agreeing to release the work under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License or making their work public domain (creativecommons.org/publicdomain ).

  5. Send this information by email to:
    Susan Reynolds Button, sbuttonq2c@gmail.com, or to 
    Loris Ramponi, osservatorio@serafinozani.it or megrez58@gmail.com


Good Luck!
Past Winners and downloadable files

The authors have released these materials under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. Right click on the "Play audio" link to download ("save link as"). On older MAC one-button mice, use Control-Click.

2019 Winners

First Place:“Skylore from Planet Earth: Orion” by Mark Percy. Audio narration tracks may be found in the “Skylore: Orion” project at https://glpa.org/shows/skylore. The written scripts can be found in the book Skylore from Planet Earth: stories from around the world…ORION by Dayle Brown. https://www.authorhouse.com/bookstore/bookdetail.aspx?bookid=SKU-000349454
Play audio files:

Honorable Mention: “Script for an astronomy program ending” by Marco Avalos. [Play audio] The script conveys a sense of awe and wonder while giving the audience a challenge to make consequential decisions as citizens of the Universe! [Read the script.]


2017 Winners

First Place: “Turtle in the Sky” by Andy Kreyche. [Play audio]
Turtles have great significance in many cultures…like many legends, this story is an amalgam of others. [Read the script.]

Second Place: “The Stars of Kilimanjaro” by Joseph E. Ciotti. [Play audio]
A personal journey and view of the stars of Kilimanjaroa. [Read the script.]

2016 Winners

First Place: “100 Sextillions of Stars” by Matthias Rode [Play audio]
The number of stars in the universe is about as large as the number of grains of sand in the Sahara desert. [Read the script.]

2015 Winners

First Place: “The Rabbit in the Moon” by Andy Kreyche. [Play audio]
This story is an adaptation of a Japanese Folk Tale. [Read the script.]

Honorable Mention: “Introduction to the Planetarium” by Oded Kindermann. [Play audio]
This script is part of an introduction that can be used for shows with students from 4 to 6 years old. [Read the script.]

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