International circus producer James Tanabe was an artistic director at Cirque du Soleil before serving as its senior director of creative strategy. Tanabe is a polymath whose passion lies at the intersection of the sciences, performing arts and international entrepreneurship. He is a graduate of MIT and of the world-renowned National Circus School of Montreal, has a master's in international studies from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from the Wharton School with a focus on international strategy for creative industries. His science background includes research in molecular biology and neurology at the Mayo Clinic and in space plasma physics at MIT's Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research. His business experience includes six years of arts entrepreneurship in Asia and two years as a consultant for McKinsey & Co.
As a director, choreographer, performer, playwright, and writer, the multilingual Tanabe has worked in Europe, Asia, North America, and Africa and has served as a lecturer, instructor, coach and director of projects promoting international artistic collaboration. He is a specialist in large-scale intercultural project management, business development and creative forecasting.
Tanabe provides services to financially sustainable international arts and culture projects with a positive social impact. He is also co-founder of the novel crowd-sourcing innovation forecasting platform The Republique, which is dedicated to creating online creative communities of international artists and to better understanding the dynamics of their creative process.