Sakura Ayane started voicing at 16 years old and her first big role was in 2011 with one of the worst shows I’ve ever seen, Yumekui Merry (yes I know the manga is better etc). It was her birthday the 29th of January. She turned 21 now. She’s 2 years younger than me. Children seiyuus aside, it feels weird knowing there’s seiyuus younger than me now.
Because she was also voicing Ayami in DMF, and Rinne barely does anything in the first half of RL, they don’t talk much about Rinne herself and more about Pretty Rhythm in general. IMO The interview doesn’t have a lot of interesting points sadly. Mostly boring sugarcoated words.
1: With Dear My Future, this is the second time you’re voicing in Pretty Rhythm.
Yes, in Dear My Future I was playing Ayami, but I actually didn’t take the audition to voice her. I did the audition to voice Reina, and I was told to try doing the one for Mia, so I did it too, but in the end it was decided that I would voice Ayami. So at first I was a bit lost. During the audition, there was a self introduction, where I talked about the different qualifications I have. (What I translated as “self introduction” is the expression 自己PR she used. From what I googled it’s how they call in Japan when you’re at a job interview and need to introduce yourself in a way that makes the employer want you.)
2: What kind of capabilities did you mention ?
I have all of the of Microsoft Office Specialist certifications.
3: Eeeeeh!? You’re 19 years old now right? (This book was released when Rainbow Live was still airing, 21st December 2013, the day episode 39 aired.)
My parents told me “your profession isn’t stable right?” and were worrying, telling me you never know when it will be useful so you should do it. I always liked fooling around with computers after all. (I remember reading that too on Hashihime)
So then I voiced Ayami for a year, and then I started hearing rumors about how they’d change all the characters for the third season. Season 1 and 2 take place in the same world, and the heroines of the first season MARs also appear in the second one, so I thought it would be the same for me too, but then I heard how 3rd season will be a different world.
I was downhearted. But thankfully I could take the audition to voice Rinne. I was told to look at the other roles too, so I looked over all the characters, but in the end I only ended up taking the audition for Rinne. I went home thinking maybe they’ll go “Actually, it’s no good. We can’t let people who voiced in the second season be in the third one too” and I was getting downhearted. And then out of the blue the person in charge of the schedule came to see me, and I was like “areee? what?” and they told me “you haven’t heard? You’ve been selected”. I remember that when I was learned that I’ll be involved with Pretty Rhythm for another year, I was happy enough to cry.
4: This season feature characters playing instruments, do you play any?
I started the piano at 3 years old, I stopped when I was 13, the only thing I can play now is 猫踏んじゃった. I forgot everything lol. I was taught the basics as part of my childhood education but there’s nothing left. Right now I can’t even read scores.
I also learned to play the Koto, I only did it for a short while but it was fun.
5: Playing the piano wasn’t fun ?
I liked it, but I hated practice. It was “do this, now do that”, it too was strict. But now I think I’d like to try again. Only if I can practice at my own pace though lol.
6: Is there any difficulties with voicing Rinne ?
She has memory loss and few lines, so I thought I must work twice as hard than the others so that the people watching notice her attractiveness, and understand what kind of girl she is. However, I wasn’t told much about what will happen to Rinne later. It was just when I thought I got a bit more info on her too. It made me think “so that’s what will be difficult about her”. Until now, most characters I played were mood makers, who’d make the tension go up and make others go along with them saying « come with me ! » .
It’s the first time I’m playing a character like Rinne, who stays in the middle of others and simply observe their actions. Taking into consideration the cast, the story and the characters, which is the best course of action I should take…? How should I bring out Rinne’s own charm, as she will become the main pillar supporting the story? After thinking about it for a while, the conclusion I arrived at is that she’s “watching over things”.
Rinne’s position is always changing, sometimes she overlooks from afar, sometimes she watch over the characters right near them then suddenly disappears like air. I thought it was necessary to give her a feeling of transparency. Until then it wasn’t a concept that existed within myself. With Rinne’s character, it was the first time I touched this sensation.
7: Recently it seems Rinne is getting closer to us. Her emotions are more visible now too, like in episode 30 with the jingiskan.
I think that around that time is finally the time when high tension Rinne appears. During the test recording, I tried singing the song. I was thinking I just had to sing it. And then someone told me “Sakura, you can’t do thaaaat!” lol. But then the next week at the actual dubbing I still went “Jingiskan♪” and they were like “Sakura we told you you can’t do thaaaat lol” and I was like “sooorryyy”.
In the end, I could sing it just a little little bit, that was the most I could do.
8: Among everything you’ve acted so far, is there any scene which left a big impression on you?
When Bell sama failed to do a Prism Live, it was heartrending and very painful. Also, when An lost to wakana and Rinne hugged her. It was rare for Rinne to come in contact with a human being, it felt like she became a bit more human herself and like she occupied the position of a mother for all of them. Also, when Ito and Kouji got together and Naru cried. How she didn’t realize her love for Kouji, and was feeling happy for them and started crying. (She already said those are her favorite scenes back at the 2013 xmas event)
She’s the one who talks the least, and looks younger than the other girls, but is the one the most wrapped around them. These scenes left an impression on me.
9: And in opposition to how she feels towards all of them, it seems Rinne holds different emotions toward Juné.
The “Is that your happiness?” line right. There, Rinne is asking Juné a question about the future she envisages for herself. Juné answering “Yes, it’s my happiness” means she wants to stay that way and go along with this fate. That’s what I was told. (Seems that at the time, the staff only told them the general idea and didn’t tell them everything, like how her “fate” means dying)
I mean, isn’t Juné san and Hijiri san’s relationship a bit… delicate for morning anime. Juné’s appearance is that of a 14, 15 years old, while Hijiri san is over 20. There’s quite a gap in their age. I was thinking about that. (According to the same book, four years before the start of the show when they met, Juné had the appearance of a 12 years old and Hijiri was 19. Since the series takes place over a year, at the time of the show Hijiri is 23-24 and Juné looks 16-17)
10: Eh, what? That’s what worries you the most?! (their age difference instead of how Juné was in trouble)
Everyone in the cast team were also excited about it and were going like “Is Hijiri san really attracted to Juné san?” lol. I’m having fun thinking that Rinne’s question implies this is forbidden love because of their age difference.
11: I didn’t think about this point of view.
I’m really excited watching those two. In a lot of ways. Because it feels like I’m observing something forbidden. It feels interesting and makes me restless. The atmosphere around it has a different feeling, something like that?
In addition, Shishido san’s voice has a mysterious feel to it, when I hear it, it makes me excited but also scared. Ah, she talks to Hijiri san with this voice… Whenever it was written on the script that Juné san speaks with a spoiled child like voice, Shishido san would do a spoiled child like voice and go “uwaaaa” lol (Come to think of it, it’s true Juné has a particular way of speaking to Hijiri compared to the other characters. It’s not often she talks to someone other than him though, and by the end while she appears and talks much more, she always talks in a decisive manner since her fate is at stake etc, so it’s not very noticeable)
When I think this is how she captured Hijiri’s heart…, I feel like I’m watching something wrong. I think a key of the story is hidden there. Plus Rinne is a little connected to Juné. It’s something noteworthy.
12: Which character would you like to go out with?
If I decide by looks alone, Hiro sama with glasses! Or, Kouji with glasses! I like glasses. 2D and 3d alike, glasses are good.
(Though it’s just a way of asking her which male character she likes, I’m not fond of how they formulated that. It’s a hidden suggestion to the otakus to make them think there’s a chance they could date her someday. Though she’s not an idol, it’s the same culture of “you may come across her in the street” crap thing. How seiyuus are seiiyus idols these days. I really don’t like it. I do particularly like Morning Musume even though I don’t listen to their songs though. I don’t hate idols themselves, they’re fellow human beings. Some of them are pretty much lost kids too. I pretty much pity them. And most wotas are also gullible themselves for buying 50 CDs of their favorite AKBs and encouraging all this crap. Anyway I hate consumerism and because of that there’s no Baccano! high budget movies or a s2 of Seto no Hanayome.)
13: A word to the readers to wrap things up?
I realize the people who bought this book must have a considerable amount of interest towards Pretty Rhythm, or even really into it. It shows there’s an interest toward it.
(It’s not often that I read in a japanese book a variant of “thank you for buying this book” and that I actually did buy the book)
I think it’ll be nice if everyone can keep being excited about Pretty Rhythm, get pulled into it’s world and look forward to more captivating developments.
If there’s people reading who randomly came across this book, I’d like it if they watched the show from the start. I think there’s a lot of foreshadowing, and all of the character’s small actions are all connected to the following events, so I’ll be very happy if they’d watch it from the beginning. Until now, a lot of characters had to face a lot of troubles, and have been hurt in a lot of ways, but they’ve all grown stronger. From there on it’s gonna be fun to receive all the emotions the characters will give us, how they grow, how will they continue growing depending on their fate. If everyone keeps watching over them until the end, I’ll be very happy. I also don’t know what will happen to Rinne from now on, she’s just a little bit away from getting back her feelings and her world, so please by all means give it your attention.