Men Don’t Dance?

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After several of my posts about men in dancing in SL appeared, I got into conversations about why men don’t dance.

I don’t know why they don’t.  It seems like a win-win all around.

Here’s my reasoning:

  • As a male dancer in a (usually) mostly female dance troupe, your services as a dancer would be constantly in demand. (Who doesn’t like to feel wanted?)
  • With new tools making it easier to incorporate couples dancing, males are/may be in higher demand.  (See ↑.)
  • A lot of audience members are female, and they love to watch men dancing. (Again, see ↑.)
  • A chance to express your creativity through dance.
  • Dancing is fun!  Especially with a partner.

Now, it was pointed out to me that perhaps men feel that dancing in a troupe is too much like ‘dressing up dolls’ for fun.  Perhaps, although I would argue that that reasoning would apply to even being in SL in the first place.  Most of us don’t wander around naked.

Maybe men just are too lazy to learn how to do something as technical as dancing in SL.  It does require a bit of knowledge, after all.

Maybe dancing is viewed by men as a ‘girly’ pursuit and not worthy of their masculine attention.

I’ve also wondered whether the fact that (supposedly) most of the men in SL are actually women has any bearing on the lack of male dancers.  I’m not sure I buy either argument there.

It was also pointed out (by more than one person) that at any gathering of women (like in a dance troupe), there is guaranteed drama – something men avoid at all costs.  Probably more true than most women would like to admit.

So, what is the solution to getting more men interested in dancing in SL?  Make it more masculine?  Add tools?  Lasers?  Guns?  Make the ladies duke it out when they have a disagreement?  All of the above?

Let me hear your thoughts on this issue!


4 thoughts on “Men Don’t Dance?

  1. One of the biggest complaints I have heard from men regarding dancing in SL is that there are so few masculine dance animations available. They seem to feel most of the dances are feminine, and they don’t want to appear feminine. But really there are lots of male and unisex available, though definitely there are more female than male of everything in SL. I think even in RL the ratio of male to female dancers is unbalanced. As a rule, fewer men are into dancing as women. Unless it’s HipHop. I am really proud of my guy for dancing, it is something we enjoy working on together. Not sure how to get more guys into it. They have to desire to do it, and few seem to have the desire. Not sure why. Some have told me, it is jut not their ‘thing.’

    1. I think men view dancing, in general, as a ‘feminine’ pursuit. Not sure why. And I agree, I think there are plenty of dances available that are not ‘feminine.’ Is that just an excuse?
      Maybe it’s because there’s no ‘payoff’ after the dancing? People dance for the sheer joy of it – are women just naturally more joyful/exuberant than men? Lots of questions and not many answers, I’m finding.

  2. Watch some SL men dance sometime.
    Most places have dances that were obviously made using a female dancer for the motion capture – and males in SL dancing just tends to look silly a lot of the time.

    Most of the time when I come across a male avatar dancing in SL, I feel kind of sorry for the person logged into that avatar – because his avatar ends up looking decidedly silly to me. And I guess this is discouraging to those of them that wish to engage.

    One of the few places you can get dances that you know were made using a man for the motion capture is Humanoid.
    – But those are dances for solo people in SL clubs. I’m not sure what use they would be to the ‘dance shows’ of your community.

    Before motion capture became the thing… there were shops that offered dances from the ‘M’ or ‘F’ section… but the ‘M’ ones still often looked like they’d been modeled on an ‘F’ avatar in Poser or somewhere…

    1. It seems that most ‘male’ dances tend to be breakdance/hip hop/krump type dances. So perhaps variety is an issue. And while I agree that many dances can seem ‘feminine,’ I’ve also seen some male dancers use them very effectively, without seeming ‘feminine.’
      I would love it if more mocap dance makers entered the market, but as it is an expensive proposition, I don’t see it happening any time soon.

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