Carrie Ann Inaba
Carrie Ann Inaba possessed an innate talent, grace, and endless drive that helped her live out her dreams of dancing on some of the world's greatest stages, as well as become a television star as a judge on the popular reality competition show "Dancing with the Stars" (ABC, 2005- ). She was born on Jan. 5, 1968 in Honolulu, HI. Of Chinese, Japanese and Irish descent, Inaba was very much into the arts as a child - she danced the hula, played the piano and violin, and sang in the choir. When she was 16, she and a friend choreographed a dance together, and for their efforts, won a statewide talent competition. During this time, Inaba received an offer to travel to Japan to act and sing, but she waited until she graduated from high school to move abroad. While living in Tokyo, Inaba had a successful career as a pop star, and also hosted radio and television shows. In 1988, Inaba moved to California, where she studied choreography at the University of California, Irvine, before she transferred and graduated with a degree in world arts and cultures from UCLA. One of her first jobs was dancing on the sketch comedy series "In Living Color" (Fox, 1990-94), before she became a back-up dancer for stars such as Ricky Martin in his music video for the hit single "Shake Your Bon-Bon" (1999) and Madonna on "The Girlie Show" tour in 1993.