I just read a small article about a study undertaken by Nick Neave of Northumbria University (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11223473), in which men (not professional dancers) were filmed dancing to a simple beat. The footage was converted into a computer-generated avatar, and women were asked to assess whether they thought it was ‘good’ or ‘bad’ dancing. The hypothesis of the study is that “movements associated with good dancing may be indicative of good health and reproductive potential” and the study seems to support this. I’m intrigued by the implications this might have for an audience’s appreciation of more ‘formal’ dancing on stage – how much is our enjoyment of dance dictated by a somehow inherent judgement of the dancer’s good health and suitability for mating?