Why We Dance

It may surprise you to learn that you are a dancer. In fact, we are all dancers. This film takes us into the beating heart of why humans simply must dance.
Available on CBC Gem

Why We Dance

Nature of Things

It may surprise you to learn that you are a dancer. In fact, we are all dancers.

Why We Dance, a documentary from The Nature of Things, is a bold exploration of dance and evolution.

The film investigates how, and why, living things express themselves through movement and rhythm, and the provocative claim that dancing made us human.

In Why We Dance, scientists (many of whom are also dancers) explore the evolutionary implications of dance in various species, while dancers explore how movement can connect humans to others, the natural world and our deeper selves.

  • Watch as babies interact with the world for the first time through movement
  • Travel to a French nature preserve to see the dance-like behaviour of flamingos that drives the evolution of the species
  • Watch as professional dancers attempt to embody animals’ patterns of movement
  • Observe a social experiment that suggests dancing together changes our brain chemistry
  • Visit MIT’s high-tech movement lab, where ballroom dancers use biofeedback to improve their technique and heal their injuries
  • Discover that while chimpanzees — among our closest living relatives — can’t match humans’ ability to dance to a beat, some birds can groove with the best of us
  • Head to an African rainforest, where scientists are broadening the definition of dance to include the “rain dance” of the chimpanzee
  • Join a First Nations choreographer as she explains the significance of dance for the survival of her culture

Why We Dance takes us into the beating heart of dance, exploring how life expresses itself through movement.

Stream Now on CBC Gem

Why We Dance

Nature of Things