Tan How Choon

Tan How Choon


A gymnast turns dancer, choreographer and groom himself as a cross-disciplinary artist. Gymnastics provided How Choon with an early physical and mental foundation for his artistic career. His natural talent in visual and lately exploration in music has expended his path in arts making now.

He received dance training in the United States of America and Singapore with Colleen Darby, Anna Sokolow, Mary Anthony, Angela Liong and Boon Teo, and also at the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts. Initial the full-time set-up of contemporary dance company in Singapore and venture into outreach and site-specific creations in local scene. He co-founded Dance Dimension Project, now ECNAD, mainly with Lim Chin Huat after their first choreographic collaboration on ZerO’Clock (1996). This partnership has resulted in 70 multidisciplinary productions over 15 years.

His choreographic outputs are as much expressions of his intellectual musings as they are creative explorations of movement. His oeuvre is regularly characterised by wit, elegance, quirkiness and a surprise element.

His groundbreaking site-specific outreach productions Ontogenesis – A Wish TO Utopia (1997) and Terrestrial Beings in Spherical Analogy (1998) liberated dance from conventions and altered perceptions about the art form. He conceptualised the use of cartoons, live video feed, iconic images and fluid environments with dance choreography, as seen in Plastic (1998), Water Story (2001), Missing In Tall Pillars (2002), Ego Flamingo (2004), In The Name of Dance (2008), Songs For Gaia (2009) and Bun & Stone (2010).

An adventurous individual, he is a process-based artist that continuously explore with variety and subtleties in areas such as voice-movement integration, sound/music, choreographic variables and body contact into a new style of movement. How Choon facilitated the dance jam segments in Fireball (2005 & 2006) making the improvisation process the performance itself. He led 2 actresses and 2 dancers in a process-based production entitled In The Name Of Dance (2008) and presented a fun and comedic performance comprises cohesive variety of singing, acting and dancing. He also showcases his own recorded music and a song through this performance. In 2009, How Choon achieved another artistic breakthrough in Songs For Gaia showcasing singing dancers in a performance comprises mainly his original a cappella songs and music.

A teacher of technical dancing, he has approached trainings in several perspectives. His teaching experiences include being Dance Master for full-time international team of dancers from Singapore, Australia, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Malaysia. From 2005 to 2006, he was invited as a part-time lecturer for the Dance Faculty of LASALLE College of the Arts.

An intellectual and practical artist, he designs many New Talent development programmes for ECNAD since 1998, such as Dance Intonet (1998-1999), Fresh From The Oven (1998-2006), Dance Explorer (2007-2010) and latest Mentorship Programme (2010 till now). He is also the brain behind ECNAD’s Arts Education Programmes (1998-2010).

He was awarded Professional Artist Grant (1999) given by the National Arts Council.
After years of arts making, he is now also known as “Choonie Tune”, where he explore and created his new works and arts practicing through visual, movement, dance and music.


Web Design:
Audrey Lim

Banner photography:
Yuan Zhiying

Web hosting:
Sponsored by IT Works Interactive