About Us: Faculty & Students

Our team of qualified and experienced Royal Academy of Dance Registered Teachers (RAD RTS), including the 1st RAD Ballet Examiner from Singapore, provide students with the opportunity to learn from a select team well-versed in the art of ballet. The high calibre of our faculty is reflected by their professional appointments & projects. Palais Dance Studio is recognized for offering a nurturing environment, safe dance practice, appreciation of music and development of self-confidence, by students who have grown up with our ballet school. We are delighted to welcome 2nd generation students to our Palais Family. 

Ms. Tan Eng Ai holds teaching diplomas from the RAD & ISTD dance examination boards in England. She was the first Singaporean to be awarded the ISTD Imperial Ballet Associate Diploma, and thus became the first ballet teacher in Singapore to achieve qualified Registered Teacher status with both these accredited organisations. With a career in dance education spanning more than 45 years, Ms. Tan has taught in Malaysia & Singapore, and has produced and choreographed for all the concerts by our ballet school. In addition to teaching and coaching students for the RAD examinations, Ms. Tan mentors trainee-teachers towards their teaching examinations and qualifications. Among the credentialed dance educators whom Ms. Tan has mentored or supervised are Teo Ching Ching (Vice-Principal & RAD Examiner), Vanessa Dewi Harijanto (Palais faculty), Elizabeth Zheng Wei, Jilyn Tee, Rosanne Chong, Lesley McCallum (teaching in Australia) and several other RAD-qualified ballet teachers in Singapore and Malaysia. The RAD Faculty of Education has appointed Ms. Tan as a CBTS Mentor and Practical Teaching Supervisor. As a RAD PTS for over 10 years, she has responsibility to assess the classroom teaching competencies of trainee ballet teachers who are enrolled in the Certificate of Ballet Teaching Studies (CBTS) distance-learning program. During the Pandemic, this has included observation & assessment of practical teaching via Zoom, with a trainee teacher & students who are in other countries. In 2011, Ms. Tan Eng Ai was awarded Life membership of the RAD, in recognition of her long-standing service & support to the Academy.

Miss Teo Ching Ching is a RAD Examiner. She has assessed students in more than a dozen countries & territories on behalf of the Academy, from Pre-Primary through to Advanced Ballet levels. During the Pandemic, Miss Teo has assessed RAD filmed examinations at all levels. Miss Teo has a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Dance from UCLA, and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Dance from the University of Buckingham. She was awarded UCLA Fellowships and National Arts Council (NAC) Arts Bursaries (Overseas) towards her post-graduate studies at UCLA. Miss Teo is a RAD & ISTD qualified teacher, with diplomas from both accredited examination boards.

Her choreography won Gold and Silver Awards at the Singapore Youth Festival (SYF) Central Judging for Dance, in International Dance. She has created dances of various genres for the University High School in West Los Angeles, and Palais Dance Studio, MGS & PLMGS in Singapore. She taught & directed the RAD & CCA Ballet programme at PLMGS Primary from 2002-2012. Miss Teo has worked with the Singapore Lyric Opera (SLO) as a Choreographer & Principal Dancer. Her appointments with the RAD started in 2001, as the first RAD Practical Teaching Supervisor (PTS) in Singapore. In this capacity, she assessed the practical teaching of trainee-teachers working on their RAD & university-validated teaching certificate qualifications. She was then appointed as one of the pioneer Tutors for the RAD Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies (CBTS) when the programme was launched in South-East Asia, in 2005. In this regional role, Miss Teo assessed trainee-teachers in their distance-learning studies. Miss Teo has conducted CBTS Intensive Study Period (ISP) courses in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur & Bangkok.

In 2012, Miss Teo was appointed as an Approved Tutor for the RAD’s new Grades 1-3 Ballet examination syllabus. Miss Teo’s portfolio also included lecturing on Dance Pedagogy & Dance Science at the Lasalle College of the Arts. Since 2010, she was invited to be an External Assessor of Ballet at Lasalle. Miss Teo organised & delivered online ballet lessons for Palais during the Singapore Circuit Breaker (2020) and subsequent mandated suspensions of in-person lessons, so our students may carry on with their learning & dancing while staying at home.

As the Founder of Artistry En Pointe, Miss Teo provides coaching expertise on project basis to ballet schools, teachers & students in Singapore & the region. Miss Teo’s elite ‘ballet tuition’ coaching services include private lessons, exam preparation workshops, competition coaching, holiday intensives, mock exams, guest-conducting of filmed ballet exams, and private CPD courses for teachers. 

Ms. Vanessa is an experienced, highly-regarded & qualified RAD Registered Teacher (RAD RTS.) Besides a degree in Business Administration from the National University of Singapore, Vanessa has the Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Dance Education BA:DE degree validated by the University of Surrey. She was four years old when she started learning ballet with our Principal, Ms. Tan Eng Ai, at Chip Bee Centre in Holland Village. With Ms. Tan’s guidance, Vanessa achieved outstanding results of ‘Honours’ or ‘Distinction’ for all nine levels of the RAD Grades ballet examinations, from Primary through to the Grade 8 Award. Vanessa has passed the RAD Advanced 2 examination, and holds ARAD status. She attends teachers’ courses on a regular basis to upgrade her skills & knowledge. After passing the RAD Elementary Examination in 1995, Vanessa was an assistant-teacher for some of Ms. Tan’s ballet classes. This eventually led to her decision to embark on a career in dance teaching, and she achieved her RAD RTS professional status under Ms. Tan’s mentorship. Vanessa has performed professionally, as a dancer in ‘The Merry Widow’ (2004) by the Singapore Lyric Opera. She taught the RAD Ballet Programme at PLMGS Primary, under the overall direction of our Vice-Principal, Miss Teo.

Since 1989, the RAD Summer & Student Schools in Singapore have offered ballet students in our region invaluable opportunities to learn from a renowned international faculty. Palais Dance Studio has often been venue for the RAD Summer Schools, from the start. Some of our top students have won awards at the Summer School, with accolades including ‘Outstanding Potential’, ‘Outstanding Dancer’ and ‘Significant Improvement’. In the year 2000 RAD Summer School, seven young students of Ms. Tan and Miss Teo were selected to compete in the OKH Dance Scholarship Classes. These children included Tan Sue Lyn (kneeling, left) and Lim Yicai (kneeling, right.) Sue Lyn has since achieved the rare feat of Distinction results for all nine levels of the RAD Grades ballet examinations, from Primary to the Grade 8 Award.

Yicai was also awarded Distinctions for all the RAD Grades examinations she had taken, including the perfect score of 100% for her Grade 5 ballet exam. For 13 years, Palais Dance Studio was the national venue (RAV) for the annual RAD Vocational Ballet Examinations in Singapore. We have also hosted numerous RAD teachers’ courses, since the 1990s. Our purpose-built spacious dance studio was the first ballet school in Singapore to install the Aerothrust dance floor system, in 1989.