Who Is Bryan Tanaka? New Details About Mariah Carey's Boyfriend

Photo: Instagram
Who Is Bryan Tanaka?

Mariah Carey has had some really troubled relationships in her lifetime, from her difficult marriage to Tommy Mottola to her complicated break up from ex-fiance James Packer. She even has contentious relationships with her staff, with a former assistant suing her for alleged mistreatment when she was in Carey’s employ several years ago

But since 2017, she seems to have found Mr. Right. Carey and dancer Bryan Tanaka have been friends and shared a stage since 2006 but in the past couple of years, they have discovered that their relationship is more than just professional. They started dating shortly after Carey’s split from Packer and audiences got to watch their relationship develop on her reality show Mariah's World. This past weekend, the pair hit the town together to celebrate Tanaka’s birthday.

Who is Bryan Tanaka? Read on for all the details.

1. Adventures of Mimi

The two actually go way back to Mariah’s 2006 tour The Adventures of Mimi. He was one of her backup dancers on the show and he said they had a professional connection right way. He told E! News: “Something connected with us back in the day and there was just a mutual admiration. She saw something in me that I actually didn’t recognize at first, from that it was over. It was set in history that we were gonna be connected some way, some how.”

In a nostalgic Instagram post, he said: “This tour changed my life. I'll never forget how much I learned from everyone in this picture. How many amazing memories we created, crazy times we had, laughter we shared... I grew up on this tour. I was fortunate to be surrounded by amazing veterans in our dance industry who took me under their wing. Forever grateful for you Eddie, Punch, Goofy, Rachel, Barry Lather, Rich & Tone, AJ Aakomon Jones, and of course MC.”

Tanaka and Mariah toured together in 2006.

2. Jealousy

Before Mariah’s split with ex-finacee Jams Packer, her relationship with Tanaka, who now serves as her creative director, had her main man fuming. Allegedly, he was outraged when Mariah gave Tanaka a lap dance onstage at her show at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.

Tanaka was unable to dance due to a knee injury and he said Mariah pulling him onstage was meant to cheer him up. “

That moment when I got to go on stage for a second, it was a special moment in time for Mariah and myself. I felt like no one really understood what I was going through and just to get that little extra love from Mariah… I’m not gonna lie it made me feel a lot better.” Parker later banned Tanaka from coming to Mariah’s Vegas shows.

This performance sparked jealousy.

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3. PDA

Once Mariah and Packer called it quits, she didn’t waste too much time getting together with Tanaka.  Shortly after the break up they were spotted together out in a group in Malibu, enjoying champagne and some laughs. Over Thanksgiving that year, the two of them were kissing on the beach in Hawaii, leaving little doubt that there was a romance. 

By February of 2017, Mariah was referring to Tanaka as her boyfriend, though she didn’t want to talk much about the relationship, saying at the time: “I’m just going to be like ‘I really don’t talk about my personal life.’ Because that’s what I used to do and it really worked for a minute, back, a while ago. I just don’t feel comfortable talking about my personal life … Me and my boyfriend don’t want to do that.”

They have never been shy about public affection.

4. Off Again On Again

In the spring of 2017, the pair had cooled off and were allegedly not together anymore, with Mariah choosing to focus more on her kids and her career for a while. The breakup didn't last and by June they were spotted out in LA holding hands and looking just as in love as ever. They have been going strong ever since and both of their social media feeds feature pictures of the two of them kissing and cuddling at every opportunity.

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Tanaka is a dancer and choreographer.

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5. Birthday Boy

This past weekend, Tanaka celebrated his 36th birthday (he is 13 years younger than 49-year-old Mariah). The couple went to see the musical Hamilton then headed over to Tao for a small gathering with friends in the private skybox. Tanaka posted photos of the night of himself surrounded by balloons. Reportedly, they were in the private skybox to make it harder for anyone to see into the intimate soiree.

The couple saw Hamilton before heading to the party.

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Rebekah Kuschmider has been writing about celebrities, pop culture, entertainment, and politics since 2010. Her work has been seen at Ravishly, Babble, Scary Mommy, The Mid, Redbook online, and The Broad Side. She is the creator of the blog Stay at Home Pundit and she is a cohost of the weekly podcast The More Perfect Union.