James Shigeta
Biographical Information
Born June 17th, 1929
Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii
Died July 28th, 2014
Los Angeles, California, United States
Productions Flower Drum Song as Wang Ta
Chu Chem as Prince Eagle (original cast)
Lost Horizon as Brother To-Lenn
The King and I as King Mongkut
Recordings We Speak the Same Language
Flower Drum Song (film soundtrack)
Vocal Type Baritone

James Shigeta was a Hawaiian actor.


Born in Honolulu in the Territory of Hawaii, Shigeta studied Drama at New York University and soon became a nightclub singer, which eventually led to him becoming known as "the Frank Sinatra of Japan." Upon returning to America, he made his screen debut in 1959's The Crimson Kimono.

Shigeta would go on to have an extensive film career, appearing in such varied productions as Holiday in Japan, Bridge to the Sun and Die Hard (as Joseph Takagi). He also worked as a voice actor in Disney's Mulan and Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Shigeta passed away in 2014.


Initially a singer before he became an actor, Shigeta released a number of albums (notably We Speak the Same Language) and performed in several films and stage productions.

He appeared in the film version of Flower Drum Song and originated the role of Prince Eagle in Chu Chem, as well as playing King Mongkut in The King and I.


Flower Drum Song (1961)Edit

  • Chop Suey (contains solo lines)
  • You Are Beautiful (solo)
  • Gliding Through My Memoree (reprise)(solo)

Lost Horizon (1973)Edit

  • Living Together, Growing Together (contains solo lines)


Chu Chem (1966)(originated the role)Edit

  • Love Is (solo)
  • I'll Talk to Her (contains solo lines)
  • Shame on You (contains solo lines)
  • I'll Talk to Her (Reprise)(duet)
  • You'll Have to Change (Reprise)(solo)
  • The River (contains solo lines)
  • Goodbye Love, Goodbye (duet)

The King and I (1978)Edit

  • A Puzzlement (solo)
  • Finale Act One (contains solo lines)
  • Song of the King (duet)
  • Shall We Dance? (duet)


We Speak the Same LanguageEdit

  • I Saw You Yesterday (solo)
  • My Ship (solo)
  • To Look Upon Love (solo)
  • Autumn Rain (solo)
  • What's Good About Goodbye (solo)
  • We Speak The Same Language (solo)
  • Yes (solo)
  • Soon It's Gonna Rain (solo)
  • This Funny World (solo)
  • I've Just Seen Her (solo)
  • Girls Like You (solo)

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