Erich Jarvis: Song and Dance

As a promising young ballet student, Jarvis thought he would pursue a career as a dancer. However, after considering how he might best serve society, Jarvis decided to become a scientist instead. He has now come full circle with his work on songbirds suggesting a link between the areas of the brain involved in vocal learning and those involved in coordinated movements such as dance.

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About the Speaker

Upon finishing high school, Erich Jarvis was invited to audition for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. However, he chose to study science at Hunter College instead. Jarvis is now a Professor in the Department of Neurobiology at Duke University Medical Center and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator. His lab studies the ability of songbirds to learn vocalizations as a model for how the brain learns behaviors.

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