Randy Channell came to Japan in the early 80’s to study Budo (martial arts). He began his studies in Chanoyu (the way of tea) shortly thereafter to balance his martial training, but as time went on tea came to take over as the main focus of his studies. In 1993 he was granted permission and received a scholarship from the previous Oiemoto of the Urasenke tradition, Dr. Sen Genshitsu to study at the Urasenke Gakuen Professional College of Chado, which he attended for three years. While there he attended innumerable tea related events and functions. He later received his Kyoju (professorship) from the current Oiemoto, Sen Soshitsu XVI, Zabosai.
Soei Sensei has been involved in hundreds of tea gatherings, conferences, demonstrations, presentations, lectures and galleries. He is often featured in newspaper and magazine articles and also makes frequent radio & TV appearances. He presently teaches at Doshisha University in Kyoto and holds lessons in the way of tea at Nashinoki shrine just east of the Imperial Palace and in Omotesando in Tokyo. He is the owner of ran Hotei, a small Japanese café /gallery near the Nijo Castle. He has been appointed by the mayor as an Ambassador of Hospitality for Kyoto City.