Anti-drug dance competition marks 20th annual edition

DanceWorks! winners Joey Tan and Gerald Chan receiving the cash prize and trophy from Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs and Health Amrin Amin on July 8, 2018.
DanceWorks! winners Joey Tan and Gerald Chan receiving the cash prize and trophy from Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs and Health Amrin Amin on July 8, 2018.ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

SINGAPORE - Like a scene out of the popular Step Up movies, dancers showed off their moves and battled it out at Clarke Quay on Sunday (July 8), improvising on the go.

But unlike that movie franchise, Sunday's DanceWorks! competition has a longer history of 20 years and has been engaging young people to lead a healthy, drug-free lifestyle through dance.

The annual event is organised by the National Council Against Drug Abuse and the Central Narcotics Bureau, in collaboration with Singapore Polytechnic, to commemorate the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, which falls on June 26 every year.

It has attracted more than 16,500 participants since its first run in 1999.

This year's contest continues the "All Styles Battle" format introduced last year, in which teams of two young people battle it out against each other in dance.

Participants were randomly paired up and could not pick their choice of music but instead had to improvise their dance movies on the spot based on music that played when their turn to compete came up.

The winners of Sunday's competition were Ms Joey Tan, 20, who just graduated from polytechnic, and professional dancer Gerald Chan, 24.

They were presented a $2,000 cash prize and a trophy by Mr Amrin Amin, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs and Health.