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Honorary Fellow

Pearl CHAN Po-chu

2014 Honorary Fellow

Pearl CHAN Po-chu

Citation

Dr Pearl Chan Po-chu is a strong believer in life-long learning, especially in the age of globalisation and technology. She believes dance should be part of education for all and accessible by everyone, not just the rich and elite. It is in this spirit that she has dedicated her career to promoting dance education to the general public.

Dr Chan was trained at the London College of Dance and Drama, gaining her diploma in 1961. She then became the Fellow of Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in 1980, and later in 1987 received a diploma from the Royal Academy of Dancing. She was made an Associate Professor in Dance of the People’s Liberation Army Academy for Arts in China in 2012 and was awarded a Doctorate in Professional Studies by Middlesex University, London, in 2013.

From 1965 to 1967, Dr Chan was the co-ordinator and presenter of Rediffusion Television’s programme Let’s Dance, a weekly programme which introduced different forms of dance, their characteristics, history, renowned practitioners and basic techniques.

As an advocate of European Folk dance, Dr Chan was responsible for introducing the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing National syllabus to Hong Kong as well as co-ordinating and teaching a number of courses for students and teachers training for Education Department. Her production, also for Education Department, of audio-visual teaching materials for the revised Secondary Physical Education syllabus in 1987 led to the inclusion of Western folk dance in the Physical Education curriculum of the Hong Kong Certificate of Education Examination.

In 1988, Dr Chan was the co-ordinator, organiser and Master of Ceremonies for the International Ballroom and Latin American Dance Championships in Hong Kong, presented by Urban Council and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, with representatives from 13 countries and regions. There followed tours to Macau and major cities in China sponsored by Dr. Stanley Ho and the late Dr. Henry Fok, as International Ballroom competitions gained official acceptance on the Mainland.

In terms of her public work and community services, Dr Chan was a founder member of Hong Kong Ballet Group in 1964, Hong Kong Dance Federation in 1978 and Hong Kong Dance Alliance in 1994. During her term of office as convenor of Hong Kong Joint Dance Conference in 1999, the organisation published the seminal work A History of Hong Kong Dance. Dr Chan is also Honorary President of Hong Kong Dancesport Association Ltd, and Honorary Advisor to the Association of Hong Kong Dance Organization. Dr Chan is a member of the Selection Committee for the Government of HKSAR and an Expert Advisor of Arts Capacity Development Funding Scheme. In 2004, she was awarded the Medal of Honor by the Government of HKSAR; and later in 2008, she received the “Distinguished Achievement Award” from Hong Kong Dance Alliance Limited.

In Mainland China, Dr Chan was a member of Beijing Political Consultative Conference from 1992 to 2008 and has been a special advisor to the National Ballet of China since 2005 and advisor to the Chinese Dancers Association since 2011.