Cary Tagawa visits the Hawaii’s Actor’s Network and Us!

A high kick or an evil grin come very easy to Cary Tagawa, an actor of screen and TV, martial arts expert, and healer who visited Honolulu to help teach current and future actors to open their minds to the unexpected. He also spent time with Hawaii Aloha Travel to talk about his life experiences and how being grounded by his deep roots here in Hawaii has helped make him who he is now. Recently turning 60, he has started a new phase in his life where he is taking the best of his background in martial arts and acting, mixing them up with the addition of the internet to start a new exciting chapter. (Watch the podcast of Bruce’s chat, which includes Cary’s credits.)

It’s evident when talking to the soft-spoken Cary (who also does a mean pidgin), that Hawaii is a very special place for him. He hopes one day to return to live here again, and he visits when he can. And with his role in the newest Hawaii Five O as the Yakuza boss, the possibility of several future visits does exist. When I asked him how long it took him to start feeling the aloha’ on his visits, he stated he has a head start on this due to his practice of Chun-Shin, using the energy of the breath to stay healthy, focused, and in synch with the world. This helps him make the transition between visits easier. Leaving here is another story, as for him, like most people, it’s harder to leave the longer he stays.

And when he leaves for his home in Arizona, of all the local items available on the island, he takes back fresh flower lei to spread a colorful aloha. Mr. Tagawa is also a self-acclaimed shopper, with excellent personal style, who can sniff out special purchases (he collects aloha and prayer beads) in any world marketplace and hints that this talent might be something we shoppers could benefit from sometime in the future.

Me and Cary during our talk. Photo by Ricky Li.

But along with his day’ job of Hollywood, he loves social media, specifically Twitter and Facebook, with its instant communication and the potential it has for reaching his fans and offering the opportunity to expand teaching and classes. His fans can follow him and stay even more connected when his plan for launching his own social site sometime in the near future. Hawaii fans have shown him what an amazing connectivity goes on on the islands and could be his proving ground for new ventures.

When I researched Cary’s career and history, what stuck out foremost on YouTube and in print was his kindness and calmness. It only took seconds after meeting him to see that this was true. Hawaii is lucky to have him as an ambassador.

Bruce in action with Cary and photog Ricky Li.


  1. I love it when kapuna embrace current positive trends in society, to me it means they are always challenging themselves and have an open mind. I'll look for him on Facebook!

  2. I was so impressed with Cary! His voice is so calming and he offered such wonderful advice. I have already begun to concentrate more on my breathing during my workouts!  Mahalo Cary and I'm so glad you've returned to the Aina of your Roots.  Welcome home!

  3. Marta… I looked for him on FB and found his page, which I 'liked'.. but could not find his personal page… so I'll keep looking.  I do follow him on Twitter now.
    Paul, thanks.   I spent a long time with him, relatively speaking on his busy day, and it was hard to compress all he said into a short blog. 
    Kalie.. did you call in during the show?  I also have started to breath more!  hard to remember to though.. will take some practice… yes, his voice was amazing.
    Isabel… I believe Cary has a date of Chinese New Year to start his new social media page.  We can go there then and watch for more hints at what's coming.

  4. Really enjoyed the podcast.  He is both humble and inspiring all at the same time.  Amazing to have seen such a great view of him that's real and true.

  5. Great interview and pics.  It's so great to be able to get interesting non-sensationalized info on  people who come to the islands for various stints. 

  6. Yes, Katherine, I did call in during the show, and so glad I did.  Cary has so much information to share, and I am like a sponge that thrives on such excellent advice…I soak it all up!  I would love to learn more about his breathing techniques and his Ninjah Sportz! 

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