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See Inside the 2019 Breakthrough Prize Gala

See Inside the 2019 Breakthrough Prize Gala

The 2019 Breakthrough Prize in Mountain View, November 4th, 2018. Photo: Getty Images

Recipients of the 2019 Breakthrough Prize were celebrated recently at a glittering awards ceremony held at the NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View.

Often called the “Oscars of Science”, the 7th annual event brought together luminaries in the science and tech communities, alongside celebrities, athletes, musicians and dozens of current and prior Breakthrough Prize laureates for a festive celebration of science.

Mark Zuckerberg, Priscilla Chan
Mark Zuckerberg, Priscilla Chan

Photo: Getty Images

A combined total of $22 million was awarded during the evening, in recognition of groundbreaking, research achievements in Life Sciences, Fundamental Physics and Mathematics.

Each Breakthrough Prize is $3 million, the largest individual monetary prize in science.

Zach Bogue, Marissa Mayer, Thandie Newton
Zach Bogue, Marissa Mayer, Thandie Newton

Photo: Getty Images

Acclaimed actor, producer and philanthropist Pierce Brosnan guided the program, which featured performances by Academy Award winner and four-time Grammy Award winner Lionel Richie and Chinese Music Sensation G.E.M..

Pierce Brosnan
Pierce Brosnan

Photo: Getty Images

There were also presentations from Orlando Bloom, Ron Howard, Rachel McAdams, Julianne Moore, Thandie Newton, Lupita Nyong’o, and Eddie Redmayne.

Lionel Richie
Lionel Richie

Photo: Getty Images



A highlight of the evening was a tribute to the late astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, which featured statements by Eddie Redmayne and Hawking’s daughter, Lucy Hawking.

Eddie Redmayne, Yuri Milner, Lucy Hawking
Eddie Redmayne, Yuri Milner, Lucy Hawking

Photo: Getty Images

Hawking inspired the theme of the evening — “Look up” – based on a quote in his final book, Brief Answers to the Big Questions:

“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.”

Mark Zuckerberg, Yuri Milner
Mark Zuckerberg, Yuri Milner

Photo: Getty Images

Prize recipients included Dr. Frank Bennett, Adrian R. Krainer, Angelika Amon, Xiaowei Zhuang, Zhijian “James” Chen, Jocelyn Bell Burnell, Charles Kane, Eugene Mele, Vincent Lafforgue, Brian Metzger, Rana Adhikari, Lisa Barsotti, Matthew Evans, Daniel Harlow, Daniel L. Jafferis, Aron Wall, Chenyang Xu, Karim Adiprasito, June Huh, Kaisa Matomäki, Maksym Radziwill.

Anne Wojcicki, Janet Wojcicki, Susan Wojcicki
Anne Wojcicki, Janet Wojcicki, Susan Wojcicki

Photo: Getty Images

“Every year I am inspired by the Breakthrough Prize laureates and the deep insights that are made possible by pure curiosity-driven research,” said Breakthrough Prize co-founder, Anne Wojcicki.

“This year is particularly special, with the special recognition of Jocelyn Bell Burnell’s groundbreaking contributions at a time when women were underrepresented and unrecognized,” she added.

Orlando Bloom
Orlando Bloom

Photo: Getty Images

Additionally, a “Breakthrough Junior Challenge” prize was awarded to 16-year old Samay Godika of India. He’ll receive $250,000 in educational prizes, which his science teacher will receive $50,000, and his school, the National Public School, in Koramangala, will receive a new science laboratory valued at $100,000 designed by and in partnership with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

Aaron Levie, Joelle Emerson
Box Co-Founder and CEO Aaron Levie with Joelle Emerson

Photo: Getty Images

Directed and produced by Don Mischer was broadcast live on National Geographic TV on November 4th.

See more photos from the spectacular event below!

Lupita Nyong'o in Oscar de la Renta
Lupita Nyong’o in Oscar de la Renta

Photo: Getty Images
Nicole Shanahan and Sergey Brin
Nicole Shanahan and Sergey Brin

Photo: Getty Images
Isabelle Boemeke and Joe Gebbia, co-founder of Airbnb
Isabelle Boemeke and Joe Gebbia, co-founder of Airbnb

Photo: Getty Images
Karolina Kurkova
Karolina Kurkova

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Nicolas Berggruen
Nicolas Berggruen

Photo: Getty Images
Thandie Newton in Schiaparelli
Thandie Newton in Schiaparelli

Photo: Getty Images
Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer

Photo: Getty Images
Julianne Moore
Julianne Moore

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Julia Milner, Yuri Milner
Julia Milner, Yuri Milner

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Nikesh Arora, Ayesha Thapar
Nikesh Arora, Ayesha Thapar

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Nathan Blecharczyk, Elizabeth Morey Blecharczyk
Nathan Blecharczyk, Elizabeth Morey Blecharczyk

Photo: Getty Images
Andrea Willms and Philipp Schindler, Google's SVP & Chief Business Officer
Andrea Willms and Philipp Schindler, Google’s SVP & Chief Business Officer

Photo: Getty Images
Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey

Photo: Getty Images
Lachy Groom, Sam Altman
Lachy Groom, Sam Altman

Photo: Getty Images
Kara McCullough
Kara McCullough

Photo: Getty Images
Mark Zuckerberg, Priscilla Chan Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg, Priscilla Chan Zuckerberg

Photo: Getty Images
Juliet de Baubigny, Ron Meyer, Vivi Nevo
Juliet de Baubigny, NBC Universal’s vice chairman Ron Meyer, and Vivi Nevo

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, David Siegel
Laura Arrillaga-Andreessen, David Siegel

Photo: Getty Images
Coinbase co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong and Raline Shah
Coinbase co-founder and CEO Brian Armstrong and Raline Shah

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
David Morris, Naomi Gleit, Facebook's VP of Social Good
David Morris, Naomi Gleit, Facebook’s VP of Social Good

Photo: Getty Images
Radhika Jones
Radhika Jones

Photo: Drew Altizer Photography
Haim Saban, Cheryl Saban
Haim Saban, Cheryl Saban

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