Nobuko is a artist who uses music, theater and dance for her own work as well as for projects she creates with communities.
Originally a dancer on Broadway and in films such as Flower Drum Song and West Side Story, her involvement in social change movements of the 1960s galvanized her as an activist and inspired a re-conceptualization of her role as an artist. This led to her co-creation of the seminal Asian American album A Grain of Sand with Chris Iijima and Charlie Chin, and her founding of Great Leap in 1978.
Her later performances, musicals and albums have continued to probe themes of identity, as well as the intersections of cultures & faiths, and our connection with Earth. More recent projects include her touring lecture/performance What Can A Song Do?, and producing, songwriting and performing in Great Leap’s series of environmental music videos, “Eco-Vids”.
Nobuko has been recognized with the Ford Foundation’s Leadership for a Changing World Award, and California Arts Council Director’s Award for her contribution to the arts in California.