Riding Snowflakes

Molecularium Riding Snowflakes - A digital dome adventure

Molecularium – Riding Snowflakes is an award-winning digital dome experience that takes young audiences into a magical, musical world of atoms and molecules.


Molecularium – Riding Snowflakes, the award-winning Digital-Dome experience, is a science lesson, a thrill-ride, and a magical musical adventure in a world of atoms and molecules. Aboard the Molecularium, audiences join a cast of atomic characters on an unforgettable adventure into the nanoscale universe.

This 23-minute immersive, animated musical is aimed at young audiences, but everyone has fun and learns a lot on along the way. Experience the transformation of matter, explore the water cycle and discover that everything is made of atoms and molecules in this action-packed adventure.

Zoom into the molecular level, build molecules from atoms, and explore states of matter in the Nanolab of our interactive Kid’s Site. Check out the experiments, activities, and songs included in our Teacher’s Resource Guide which are free and fun for your home, classroom or museum.

Character hydro

“Molecularium has gotten rave reviews from teachers and from the public! We were skeptical at first as it seemed like a lot of content for the age range of the cartoon format, but everyone learns something new in this fast-paced show with its memorable songs and characters.”
Alexandra Barnett, Former Executive Director
Chabot Space & Science Center


Explore billions and trillions of atoms and molecules with Oxy, a precocious oxygen atom, and Hydro and Hydra, her wacky hydrogen pals.

Ride from the atomic structure of a snowflake to the far reaches of space aboard the Molecularium, the most fantastic ship in the Universe. With help from Mel, the ship’s computer, and Carbón, a passionate carbon atom, the crew explores the secret world within everyday objects.

Audiences join this cast of atoms on an immersive and unforgettable adventure into the nanoscale universe.

circular screenshot from riding snowflakes

in domes

Molecularium – Riding Snowflakes is currently in widespread distribution for Digital Dome Theaters. Look and ask for it at a planetarium dome near you. Digital dome is the rapidly emerging new standard for planetaria and electronic theater. This medium renders the ultimate experience in immersive entertainment, using a planetarium dome as a spherical screen to wrap the entire field of view in high-definition visuals.

Riding Snowflakes has shown or is being shown at leading venues, including the following:

Chabot Space and Science Center – Oakland, CA
LodeStar Astronomy Center – Albuquerque, NM
Children’s Museum of Science and Technology – Troy, NY
Newark Museum Planetarium – Newark, NJ
Grengras Planetarium – Hartford, CT
College of Southern Nevada – Las Vegas, NV
Roper Mountain Science Center – Greenville, NC
Tellus Science Museum – Cartersville, GA
Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum – Birmingham, UK
Dubai Children’s City – Dubai, UAE
Sharjah Higher Colleges of Technology Planetarium – Sharjah, UAE

“All of us at LodeStar–and our visitors–loved turning our planetarium into the Molecularium. The show delights, engages, and educates audiences in important science concepts outside the traditional bounds of astronomy and planetarium programming. It’s fun, impossibly cute, terrifically clever, and the learning comes in the most convivial way done yet on a digital dome.”

David Beining, Director, LodeStar Astronomy Center

Find a Dome near you – List of Digital Dome Theaters Worldwide


Spitz  |  Sky-Skan  |  E&S  |  Lochness  |  E-Planetarium

Behind the Scenes:

Selected Crew of Molecularium – Riding Snowflakes

WRITER, DIRECTOR, and EDITOR: V Owen Bush is a designer, producer, and filmmaker who uses immersion and participation to create transformative social experiences. His works are presented in venues such as live concerts and events, digital planetaria, IMAX3D, broadcast television, mobile devices, and the web. He is a member of the Omnisensorialist Federation and Immersionists. V has had a principal role in notable projects including Pseudo Programs Inc., MTV’s AMP, QUIET!/We Live In Public, SonicVision at the Hayden Planetarium, and the Molecularium Project at Rensselaer. As a freelance motion designer, V has developed broadcast television promos for NBC, MTV, VH1, PBS, Nickelodeon, Showtime, Discovery, History Channel, NY1, and others. V is a co-founder of Glowing Pictures, a company whose work includes televised concerts, music videos, commercials, multimedia operas, and visual environments. Glowing Pictures’ clients include Vh1, MySpace, the Beastie Boys, the Creators Project, Eyebeam, the American Museum of Natural History, Imagination and Lincoln Center, among many others.

WRITER and PRODUCER: Kurt Przybilla is an inventor, educator, writer, and producer. He invented Tetra Tops®, the world’s first spinning top with more than one axis of spin. These award-winning toys have been featured in the New York Times, Popular Science, Baby Einstein, Child and Discover Magazine, as well as at the Smithsonian Institute. In 2005, he co-founded the Bamboo Institute to develop innovative ways to utilize bamboo’s potential to help solve a wide range of problems facing our planet. Kurt taught in New York City for over ten years. He also taught in Japan for three and a half years where he studied Japanese archery, flower arrangement, language, and poetry. Since 2004, Kurt has been working with Nanotoon Entertainment on the Molecularium Project.

CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Chris Harvey is an Emmy winning art director who has created designs for an international roster of clients including MTV, VH1, NBC, ESPN, Vox (Germany), Viva-Plus (Germany), The Smithsonian, Hearst Publications, and The American Museum of Natural History. Additional awards include a Peabody, three Broadcast Design Association Awards, as well as recognition at film festivals in Chicago, New York, and Cologne. As art director for MTV, Chris generated countless on-air graphics for the network, moving on to direct broadcast design for Curious Pictures and Lee Hunt Associates in New York City. In 2003 he was the creative director for the Hayden Planetarium’s animated music show “SonicVision”. Chris has provided visual support to pioneer composers of long-form contemplative music, producing imagery for La Monte Young, David Hykes, and Terry Riley. Making art since childhood, Chris has shown multimedia installations at several prominent galleries in New York City and the New York Capital District.

LEAD CHARACTER ANIMATOR: Steve Rein has been a professional computer animator for over twenty years, working as art director, technical director and animator for companies including Colossal Pictures, Protozoa, Digital Light and Acclaim Entertainment. From a “Virtual Bill Clinton” created for MTV to directing movies for PlayStation games, he specializes in bringing life to computer-generated characters. Rein is an adjunct professor of animation at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

VISUAL FX SUPERVISOR and TECHNICAL DIRECTOR: A veteran of the visual effects industry, Blake Holland is a specialist in the integration of 3D computer graphics with motion control photography and motion simulators. He worked at Imax RideFilm, and was a member of the visual effects team at Mass Illusion where he created signature looks for the Academy Award-winning effects for the films Starship Troopers, What Dreams May Come and The Matrix. At Giant Studios in Atlanta, Holland integrated the various 3D systems and was the technical director on the award-winning in-house animation Fruits of Labor, directed by Rudy Poat.

DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY and TECHNICAL DIRECTOR: Joshua Minges works in many aspects of special format, immersive entertainment, from hardware integration to CG animation. Since 1992 he has worked in location-based entertainment including a motion simulator attraction for the Luxor Hotel and Casino, an interactive motorcycle simulator for Mariah Entertainment, a series of productions and installations for Imax RideFilm, and an interactive multi-person simulator developed with Hitachi. Minges has worked with the American Museum of Natural History on all of their digital dome productions: Passport to the Universe, the Search for Life, and SonicVision.

CHARACTER DESIGNER: Leona Christie is an artist whose drawings, installations, and animations have been exhibited at galleries and museums including the Drawing Center (NYC), Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (San Francisco), G-Module (Paris) and the New York Video Festival. Her work has been reviewed or reproduced in the New Yorker, the Paris Review, and New Art Examiner, and may be found in the collections of the New York Public Library and the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco. She has been an Assistant Professor of Art at the University at Albany, State University of New York (SUNY) since 2003.

A Nanotoon Production Made Possible by a Grant from the National Science Foundation Developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute In Collaboration with the Children’s Museum of Science and Technology.

Directed By V Owen Bush
Produced By Kurt Przybilla
Written By V Owen Bush, Kurt Przybilla
Executive Producers Shekhar Garde, Linda S. Schadler, Richard W. Siegel
Character Animator Steve Rein
Visual FX Supervisor Blake Holland
Director of Photography Joshua Minges

Creative Director Chris Harvey
Character Designer Leona Christie
Animators Rafael Alcala, Justin Rosen
Lead Simulator Harshit Patel
Songs Jason Martin, Nikolas Van Egten
Score Toshio Kajiwara
Sound Design & Engineering Stephan Moore, Jesse Stiles

– Cast –
Rachel Brod as Oxy
Kurt Przybilla as Mel
Dennis Del Zotto as Hydro
Shelley Hirsch as Hydra
Derek Sweeney-Kesler as Carbón
Nikolas Van Egten as C2
V Owen Bush as C3
Wanda Felicia-Pittman as Oxy’s Singing Voice
Brittney Grob as Oxy’s Singing Voice
Ricardo Picon as Carbón’s Singing Voice
Caterina De Re as Alert Voice
and Introducing
Justin Rosen as the Chewer

Technical Directors Blake Holland, Joshua Minges

Editor / Composite Artist V Owen Bush

Senior Scientific Advisors Shekhar Garde, Linda S. Schadler

Molecular Simulations Manoj Athawale, Monica Berrondo, Shekhar Garde, Sandeep Jain, Harshit Patel, Sowmi Rajamani

Associate Animators Stephen Mackenzie, Stephanie Siebert

Sound Recording & Editing Werner F, Ian Funk, Hanuman Goleman

Video Engineers Johnny Dekam, Derek Sweeney-Kesler

Systems Administrators Manoj Athawale, Harshit Patel, Yan Shoshitaishvili

Custom Programming Blake Holland, Joshua Minges, Daniel F. Ott, Justin Rosen, Erik Wesselak

Microscopy Ray Dove, Robert Hanna

Contributing Artists Benton-C Bainbridge, Bill Etra

Production Assistants Hanuman Goleman, Sahithi Reddigari, Justin Rosen

Scientific Advisors Pulickel M Ajayan, Daniel Gall, Pawel Keblinski, Richard W. Siegel

Production Consultant Karen McCarthy

Production Consultation Rose Center Production, American Museum of Natural History

Digital-Dome Consultant sD’nardo Colucci, David McConville

Educational Consultants Jayne Architzel, Tracey Bennett, Deirdre Schadler, Linda S. Schadler, Lisa Scorzelli

Casting Assistance Ulysses Terrero

Business Administrator Danielle Belser

Project Administrators Damian Huising, Nancy Rysedorph

Story & Characters Created By V Owen Bush, Kurt Przybilla

A Nanotoon Production

– Songs –

Written By Bush/Przybilla/Van Egten
Composed & Arranged By Nikolas Van Egten

“3 States Of Matter”
Written By Bush/Harvey/Przybilla/Van Egten
Arranged By Stephan Moore & Jesse Stiles

“Billions & Billions”
Written By Bush/Martin/Przybilla
Composed & Arranged By Jason Martin

“So Small”
Written By Bush/Przybilla/Van Egten
Composed & Arranged By Nikolas Van Egten

“Carbon Is Incredible”
Written By Bush/Przybilla/Van Egten
Composed & Arranged By Nikolas Van Egten

“Atoms Are Amazing”
Written By Bush/Przybilla/Van Egten
Composed & Arranged By Nikolas Van Egten

Images Provided Byfreestockphotos.com

Aerial and Satellite Photography Provided Byglobexplorer.com
Snowflake Images Provided By
Wilson “Snowflake” Bentley

Special Thanks!Accelerated Servers
American Museum of Natural History
Digitalis Educational Solutions
the Elumenati
Michael Addario
Theresa Bourgeois
Igor Broos
Mary Cimo
Veronica Fitzgerald-Kaedy
Paul Fredette
Delcy Fox
Les Gerhardt
Ken Gertz
John Kolb
David Haviland
Hon. Shirley Ann Jackson
Joe Michaels
Bud Peterson
Val Peterson
Chuck Rancourt
Richard Scammel
Monica Simon
Maggie Vinciguerra
Michael Wacholder
Mark Bajuk
Anthony Braun
Carter Emmerich
Myles Gordon
Josh Harris
Mara Haseltine
Walter “Bud” Mahoney Tomek Rabalski
Jason Sinopoli
Tom Sinopoli
Erik Wesselak
Lalalandia 2077
the Omnisensorialist Federation
and the people of Troy New York

Developed at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s
Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for Directed Assembly of Nanostructures

In Collaboration withthe Children’s Museum of Science and Technology
Funded by the Nanoscale Science and Engineering Initiative
of the National Science Foundation under NSF Award Number DMR-0117792

© 2005 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

the Production, Characters and Logos used herein are the Sole Property of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute