Dance Your PhD finalists have been announced, and they are GLORIOUS

Every year, Science's Dance your PhD competition challenges grad students past and present to convey their dissertations with interpretive dance. Finalists for this year's competition were just announced, and yes, they are amazing.


Featured up top is one of the finalists in the Biology category: "Sperm competition between brothers & female choice," by Cedric Kai Wei Tan. You should really just watch the video, but here's the gist:

Females of the red jungle fowl mate with multiple males, which can create competition between sperm of different males in order to fertilize the egg. In my PhD thesis, I explored the effect of brotherhood on sperm competition and female choice. Interestingly, the brother of the first male that the female has mated with invests more sperm in the female than the non-brother of the first male mate. However, the female ejects a higher proportion of sperm from the brother of the first mate and favours the sperm of the non-brother, facilitating a higher fertility by the non-brother's sperm.

No but really. Watch it. Then go watch the rest, and vote on your favorite, over at Science.

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Celia the Vampire Slaying Vampire

Loved these! I'm surprised, but I think this one is my favorite. The dancers worked in an extremely difficult space (seriously, doing ballet around tightly-packed gym equipment is dangerous and hard) and managed to turn out extremely emotive performances. The rat movements were clever, as was the Darren Aronofsky motif. The experiment was clearly demonstrated in movement.