Tan Kheng Hua

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Tan Kheng Hua
Chinese name 陈琼华
Chinese name 陳瓊華 (traditional)
Chinese name 陈琼华 (simplified)
Pinyin chén qióng huá (Mandarin)
Pe̍h-ōe-jī Tân Khêng-hôa (Hokkien)
Born Tan Kheng Hua
(1963-01-17) 17 January 1963 (age 55)
Alma mater Indiana University
Occupation actress
Nationality Singaporean
Spouse(s) Lim Yu Beng (m. 1996)
Children Lim Shi An (daughter)

Tan Kheng Hua (simplified Chinese: 陈琼华; traditional Chinese: 陳瓊華; pinyin: Chén Qióng Huá; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Tân Hhêng-hôa; born 17 January 1963) is a Singaporean actress best known for her role as Margaret Phua in Singapore-based MediaCorp TV Channel 5's longest-running hit television sitcom Phua Chu Kang Pte Ltd. In her youth, she never thought about acting until she went to the United States to get her university education.


While pursuing her studies, Tan enrolled herself in a theatrical art course, which gave her the first taste of acting. Although her desire to be an actress was very strong, she did not make acting a career immediately after she returned to Singapore. Instead, she took up a marketing job and acted in her spare time.

Tan started out in corporate marketing after she graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana University.

The first stage play she performed in was John Bowen's The Waiting Room directed by her cousin Ivan Heng. It took almost a decade before Tan became a full-time actress.

Tan worked on her new creations – a teen musical for the stage as well as a new 13-part Channel 8 television drama series Mr And Mrs Kok 妙探夫妻档 which debuted on 26 November 2009.

Since 2000, Tan has been producing and creating projects for theatre and television. She produced the movies "Revenge of the Dim Sum Dollies", "Dim Sum Dollies – Singapore's Most Wanted!" and "Dim Sum Dollies in Little Shop of Horrors". For Arts Central, she created and executive produced the television series "9 Lives", and "Do Not Disturb", the latter of which became the first local television drama to achieve a maximum five-star rating in The Straits Times' Life! segment. She also conceptualised the top-rated infotainment programme, "Heartland Getaways".

In April 2017, she joined the cast of the Warner Bros. film Crazy Rich Asians starring Constance Wu.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Tan has been married to Lim Yu Beng since 1996 and they have a young daughter named Shi-An.

Awards and nominations[edit]

  • Art Nation Best Actress Award (2003)
  • DBS Life! Theatre Award, Best Actress (2002),
  • Asian Television Award, Best Comedic Performance by an Actress (2002),
  • Asian Television Award Highly Commended Performance by an Actress (2003),
  • Star Awards (Mandarin) Nominated Best Supporting Actress (2002),
  • Asian Television Award Runner-up Best Current Affairs & Magazine Presenter (2000),
  • JCCI Singapore Foundation Culture Awards for Contributions to Singapore (1998),
  • Critics Choice for Best Actor Cairo International Festival of Experimental Theatre (1997), *Indiana University Founders Day Award for High Scholastic Achievement (1984, 1985, 1986), *National Colours Awards for Gymnastics (1977) (Noteworthy Selections: 21 Remarkable Women of *Singapore by the Association of Women for Action and Research (Aware))
  • One of the invited guest writers for Feel Singapore chapter on the arts, listed in People at The Peak – The Who’s Who of Singapore, chapter on the arts.



Year Title Role
1996 Army Daze Cavewoman
1999 That One Not Enough / 那个不够
2005 Cages Ali Tan
TBD Crazy Rich Asians TBD


Year Title Role Notes
1994–1995 Masters of the Sea
1995 Dick Lee with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra Herself, as host variety show
1997–2007 Phua Chu Kang Pte Ltd Margaret Phua 7 seasons
1999 AlterAsians – Iris’ Rice Bowl Iris miniseries
2000 A War Diary
2002 Beautiful Connection 九城糕 Mo Lan Ying 莫蓝颖 2003 The New Home
2008–2009 Sayang Sayang Nellie Tan 2 seasons
2013 Serangoon Road Artik 1 episode
2014 Marco Polo Xie Daoqing 8 episodes
2017 BRA Gloria Yap 2 episodes


  • Drama: Wild Rice: Invitation To Treat – The Eleanor Wong Trilogy by Eleanor Wong (2003), Luna-Id: The Lover by Harold Pinter (Sarah, 2004), Wild Rice: Animal Farm adapted by Ian Wooldridge (Clover, 2002), Action Theatre: Autumn Tomyam by Desmond Sim (Marge Lerner, 2001), TheatreWorks: Trojan Women by Euripedes (Andromeda, 1991), Mad Forest by Caryl Churchill (Lucia, Dog, 1990), Mergers & Accusations/Wills & Secession by Eleanor Wong (Ellen Toh, 2001); Fiction Farm: The Blue Room by David Hare (Au Pair, Model, Singapore premier 1999), Closer by Patrick Marber (Anna, Singapore premier 2000); Practice Performing Arts: The Caucasian Chalk Circle by Bertold Brecht (emsemble, 1989)
  • Musicals: Toy Factory: Guys & Dolls by Damon Runyon (Sarah Brown, 1999); TheatreWorks: Beauty World (Lulu, lead, South East Asian Theatre Festival and Tokyo International Theatre Festival in Japan); Music & Movement: Kampong Amber by Catherine Lim (May, lead, opening show Singapore Arts Festival 1994)
  • Devised Plays with Movement: Theatreworks: Descendants of the Admiral Eunuch by Kuo Pao Kun (ensemble, winner Critics Award Best Acting Ensemble Cairo International Festival for Experimental Theatre, 1996), Lao Jiu by Kuo Pao Kun (ensemble, Perth Festival 1994); Longing (ensemble, outdoor performance); Broken Birds (ensemble, outdoor performance, 1995)


  1. ^ "'Crazy Rich Asians' Adds Awkwafina". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2017-04-24. 

External links[edit]