Philip Kan Gotanda

Department: Theater, Dance, & Performance Studies

Over the last three decades, playwright Philip Kan Gotanda has been a major influence in the broadening of our definition of theater in America. Through his plays and advocacy, he has been instrumental in bringing stories of Asians in the United States to mainstream American theater as well as to Europe and Asia. Mr. Gotanda holds a law degree from Hastings College of Law and studied pottery in Japan with the late Hiroshi Seto. Mr. Gotanda is a respected independent filmmaker; his film, Life Tastes Good, was presented at the Sundance Film Festival. Mr. Gotanda, alongside Michael Sasaki, had a chinglish version of My Boyfriend’s Back with Joan Chen singing lead on the Hong Kong pop charts before it was banned. Mr. Gotanda is the recipient of a Guggenheim as well as other honors and awards. He resides at Gotanda Art Plant in the Berkeley Hills with his writer-producer wife, Diane Takei, and their famously ill-behaved dog, Toulouse.