It is 2007 Joshua Bell, an internationally-renowned violinist, started to play with a Stradivarius in the Washington underground. And no one stopped to listen to him. Why? It is simple – we evaluate a music performance based on our biases. This was shown in a laboratory experiment conducted by researchers from three US universities. In particular, when we listen to a piece of music the activation of the different areas of our brain change depending on whether we are convinced that a conservatory student is playing it or an internationally renowned musician. In practice, expectation and bias shape our perception of music, influencing how our brain works.

To have more information about this research, you can read the article published on Nature.