Eleanor Bartsch/YouTube

Have You Seen This? Pair of elephants ‘dance’ to Bach

By Martha Ostergar | Posted - Aug. 26, 2014 at 1:15 p.m.



This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

BARABOO, Wis. — Elephants are intelligent and emotional animals that have behaviors that we as humans can recognize and relate to. In fact, there is evidence that elephants mourn, cry and feel empathy.

So if elephants can feel sadness, it stands to reason they have happy behaviors as well. And apparently dancing to music is one of those.

Eleanor Bartsch said on her YouTube channel that she decided to warm up outside for a concert with the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra at the Circus World Museum Zoo. Her warm-up audience consisted of two elephants — 44-year-old Kelly and 45-year-old Viola — who have lived together for most of their lives.

As Bartsch played her part of Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins, Kelly and Viola not only listened intently, but they began reacting to music in what could arguably be called a dance. The pair rock back and forth on their front feet while shaking their heads and waving their trunks.

Once Bartsch stops playing, the elephants stop dancing.

It’s hard not to watch the video more than once and to be amazed and delighted by Kelly’s and Viola’s charming dance.

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Martha Ostergar

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