Melbourne, Nov 27 : In a rather innovative collaboration between science and art, a PhD student from University of Sydney has won an international dance contest, where participants had to actually dance their thesis.
Dr Sue Lynn Lau stood first in the graduate student section with her entry "The role of vitamin D in beta cell function".
She has won a trip to Chicago as her prize where she will see her winning entry performed by professional dancers in February 2009.
Her routine included a troupe of five dancers who danced on three pieces of music: the Latin rhythm of 'Hot Hot Hot', moving through the classical 'Nutcracker Suite', ending with the popular 'Walking on Sunshine'.
"When I heard about the competition. I just thought, well I'll just have to be a part of that. I think mine won because it was more accessible than some of the others, which were very serious. Although I did like the one about haemoglobin, and the one about rain clouds and precipitation," The Daily Telegraph quoted Sue Lynn as saying.
The competition, which began in 2007, was organised by Science magazine in conjunction with the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
The contestants this year were asked to translate their PhD theses into dance, perform it, video the result and then post it on YouTube by November 16.
There were a total of 36 entries from around the world in four categories and the winners were announced on November 21.
The competition was open to PhD students in any scientific field with the aim of bringing scientist and artists together in a successful collaboration.
"I think the magazine just liked the sheer hilarity of the concept as a way to popularise science, or to improve its image," said Sue Lynn, who is completing her PhD at the Western Clinical School, University of Sydney.