The Role of Social Support for Promising Male Dance Students in Singapore (2015)

Principal Investigator: Dr Joey Chua


This study builds on an earlier study by Chua, “The Role of Social Support in Dance Talent Development”,1examining the types of support—informational, instrumental, and emotional—that promising male dance students receive from family, teachers and peers. Nine male dancers aged 14 to 27 who were participants in three different dance programmes –  after-school activities, a formal nine-month Dance Talent Development Programme with professional exposure, and tertiary-level dance programmes – were interviewed alongside significant people in their dance journey. Data was collected from participant observation, interviews, and documents over a one-year period. The study concludes the importance of all the three types of support in providing practical means and motivation for male dancers to pursue dance as a career.


1Chua, J. (2015a). The role of social support in dance talent development. Journal for the Education of the Gifted, 28(2), 169–195. doi:10.1177/0162353215578281


Title: Dance Reenactment through Observer Facilitation: Theoretical Reflections from an Empirical Investigation (2014)

Principal Investigator: Mr John Mead


Practice as Research (PaR) is the view that practice is both the object of research as well as the research itself. However, in dance, choreographers who embrace this approach encounter a challenging two-fold problem: to use self-observation to access information about what is taking place during practice without simultaneously disrupting the very process of creativity. There is a scarcity of literature that addresses practical research approaches or tools with which PaR can be enabled directly within the choreographic realm. To address this problem empirically, a new choreographic research method called “Mimetically-cued Recall” (MCR) is employed. MCR is an approach to observation, reenactment and recall of creative methods employed by choreographers conducting first-person dance practice as research.


Two series of participatory, action-based movement experiments with MCR were conducted. Facilitators were employed to create detailed reenactments of each choreographer’s creative work.  Subsequent viewing and interaction with the reenacted work enabled choreographers and dancers to revisit their creative processes in order to research various aspects in retrospect and to reflect on the process, providing some empirical insight in to issues such as memory, observation, and reenactment that we subsequently connect with theoretical literature on PaR in Dance.