Born on January 5, 1968 in Honolulu, Hawaii, Carrie Ann Inaba proudly exudes an ethnic background of Japanese, Chinese and Irish. She was educated at Sophia University, the University of California, Irvine and the University of California, Los Angeles, and was able to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in World Arts and Cultures.
For two years in 1986, Inaba lived in Tokyo as a popular singer who sang with artists such as China Blue, 6 1/2 Capezio and Searching. Upon returning to America, she appeared as one of the "Fly Girls," a group of backing dancers in the television series In Living Color, which was also a stepping stone for recording artist and dancer Jennifer Lopez.
By 1993, Inaba was touring with Madonna as a dancer in "The Girlie Show Tour," which required her to take on two very challenging tasks. These were to shave her head bald and perform topless. She later toured with Ricky Martin in his "Livin' La Vida Loca" tour.
Inaba also took on film roles, as she became part of 2002's Austin Powers in Goldmember, where she played Fook Yu, alongside Diane Mizota, who played Fook Mi. After Mizota was cast for the role, she suggested that Inaba would play her on-screen sister, as the two actresses resembled each other. As a dancer, Inaba also appeared in films Lord of Illusions, Showgirls, Boys and Girls, Flintstones II, Freak and American Virgin.
As for choreography work, Inaba has been in charge of creative direction for American Idol
, American Juniors, All American Girl, He's a Lady, In Search of the Partridge Family, Married by America, The Sexiest Bachelor in America Pageant, The Swan, and Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire? She also worked on the Miss America Pageant for five years.
Aside from working on choreography, Inaba is also the successful founder and president of EnterMediArts, Inc., a video production company, which has worked on productions E! Behind The Scenes Miss America Special, 7th Festival of the Pacific Arts, A Portrait of IVI, Beyond the Dancing Image and the short feature film, Black Water.
Inaba has also established herself as a judge on Dancing with the Stars
, and is now currently working on Dance War: Carrie Ann VS. Bruno, in which she serves as a coach and choreographer in the ABC reality series.
(Photos courtesy of ABC)