“Kotobuki Minako’s Another Wonderland in the UK” is a series of interviews with Kotobuki Minako, a voice actress who is currently living in the UK. She talks her daily life in the UK.
Last time, we talked a lot about how the museums and theaters in the UK finally opened in May, how she enjoyed her holidays, and how she felt about the live distribution of “Sphere’s 4 colors LABO”.
This time, on the 15th interview, Kotobuki -san told about how she enjoys living in England, after completing the stay home period, enjoying the long-sought “Victoria & Albert Museum”, and celebrating her friend’s birthday. In the theme talk, the person who she has been longing for 10 years was revealed.
[Interview / text = Yoneda Kaori]
■ “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba” is released in England! Hayami Saori’s birthday celebration
――Since last month, the situation has changed significantly in the United Kingdom, including the easing of regulations on measures against spreading the novel coronavirus. On your blog and YouTube channel, you seem to enjoy museums and theaters.
Kotobuki: Yes! Because I can do things that I couldn’t do before, I’m enjoying it with all my might.
――On the YouTube channel, you said that you signed up for vaccination.
Kotobuki: I’m soon will be 30, so I have to make a reservation right away. I was surprised that there were about 10,000 people waiting for online reservations on the day.
It’s hard to connect, and once you disconnected, you have to wait from the end of the line again. I concentrated on making reservations so that the screen wouldn’t disappear (laughs).
――In “Kotobuki Minako’s Rough Laugh”, you said that “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train” was finally released in England. Have you seen it yet?
Kotobuki: I saw it! Despite this corona pandemic, the theater was almost half full. It was exactly on spring break, so there were many young people. I went to see it with my host family’s relatives, and I thought they really wanted to watch it in Japanese, so I was planning to take the Japanese dub version.
But when it started, for some reason both Tanjirou and Rengoku were talking in English. I noticed while watching, “Do I know those voices?… Oh, I chose the wrong ticket!” (Laughs).
It was really interesting, especially the scene from the PV where Rengoku was eating a lunch box on the train and saying not “Oishii” but “Tasty!”.
And the ending was so sad! The host family’s relatives also cried, saying, “We’ve never cried so much!”
――In May, your friend Hayami Saori, who also appeared in the “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba”, had her birhday. Kotobuki-san, you also sent a message to the event.
Kotobuki: It is another memorable event of May! Apart from that message, we celebrated her birthday on the phone with Hayamin (Hayami-san’s nickname) and Yuki Aoi. Also, the gift, about which I wrote in the message that I gave to her, is the one in this photo.
At the well-established department store “Fortnum & Mason” in the United Kingdom, I carefully selected tea leaves that suit the two of them and presented the blend. It seems that they haven’t received it yet, so I don’t know how they liked the taste. I hope they will find it delicious!
――So, let’s look back with the photos from here.
■ Enjoy British iced tea in a memorable place
――In this photo, there is an image of someone’s birthday cake.
Kotobuki: This is a picture of my Brazilian classmate celebrating his birthday. It seems to be a cake made by a Brazilian pastry chef, but as it looks, it was really sweet! It was so sweet that I couldn’t eat all of it, but for the first time, I came across a cake that was so exciting just by looking at it (laughs).
――The sweetness can is obvious from the photo (laughs). What’s on the next photo?
Kotobuki: This is a picture taken at a place in my memory. It’s called “Tea House Theatre”, but it’s a favorite shop of my first friend in England.
He has already returned to Japan, but I remember coming to grab a bite there with him before returning to Japan. His birthday was in June, and I happened to come nearby for a dance lesson, so I thought, “I have to call for a celebration after eating here,” and this is a picture of the food I ate at that time…
The drink next to this Eggs Benedict is actually tea! There is basically no iced tea in England. Drinking ice tea seems like a bad idea here (laughs).
However, this shop has two types of iced tea menus, so I ordered it. It was very delicious.
■ The heart desired “Victoria & Albert Museum”
――It’s a picture from the “Victoria & Albert Museum”, where you said you wanted to in a previous interview. You were finally able to get inside!
Kotobuki: That’s right ~! It was a long-cherished desire, so I walked all over, and in fact, I was only able to see one floor on that day (laughs). This photo shows the “Ruins” area on the 1st floor. I was so impressed with the power that I couldn’t move on.
――When you saw only one floor, you want to go there again.
Kotobuki: I feel like I can’t go all around unless I go a couple of more times (laughs). It seems that the exhibition of “Alice in Wonderland” would start the day after I went, and I wanted to see it.
→ Next page: anime and voice actors that influenced Kotobuki Minako …
■ Anime and voice actors that influenced Kotobuki Minako…
――Since you just talked about “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba”, this time I would like to talk with you about “anime”.Before we discussed the “music” that influenced you before, but what anime influenced you?
Kotobuki: I had a audition for the current office, Music Ray’n, without knowing that it was a “voice actor’s office” (laughs). At that time I was asked, “What is your favorite anime?” I remember saying “Detective Conan” because I was so nervous.
I love “Detective Conan” so much, that even before, when I was asked about my favorite character in a message from Tomatsu Haruka on “Kotobuki Minako’s Rough Laugh
“, I said “Kudou Shinichi”.
Also, when I was a child, the movie series “Crayon Shin-chan” deeply impressed me. When I was a kid, I used to like “Crayon Shin-chan: Fierceness That Invites Storm! The Adult Empire Strikes Back” and “Crayon Shin-chan: Fierceness That Invites Storm! The Battle of the Warring States”, but since I became an adult, I realized that I like the works made by director Hara Keiichi.
Also, I liked the world view of “Crayon Shin-chan: Great Adventure in Henderland “, but when I realized that the set design was done by Yuasa Masaaki, I realized that I really like Yuasa’s worldviewafter growing up.
――I think when you a little, you don’t notice things like “favorite voices”. Are there any voice actors you admire?
Kotobuki: After I entered the office at the age of 14, I just watched anime and learned about many voice actors thinking, “I can make this kind of voice,” “I like this kind of anime,” and “I can do this kind of acting.”
After I became a voice actress, I was influenced by Kaida Yuuko’s voice and acting, and thought, “I want to do more dubbing work!”
I liked her since “TIGER & BUNNY”, and not only the voicing but also her personality! My favorite Kaida-san’s work is “Gossip Girl”, and thankfully I was able to participate from Season 4, and Kaida-san contacted me the day before dubbing. She invited me, “The cast of ‘Gossip Girl’ always goes out to eat out after recording, so if you like, please come.”, and I admired how she leads everyone as a chairman and the her behavior at the scene.
――In Kotobuki Minako’s 1st photo book “Minako Michi” (released in 2011), the Q & A “Women I Longed for” included the names of Audrey Hepburn, Miyazaki Aoi, and Kaida-san. Kotobuki-san loves Kaida-san for 10 years.
Kotobuki: Ah! I see… My Kaida-san’s fan history has been 10 years… From now on, I can say “I’m a fan of Kaida-san!” (Laughs).
――Have you been influenced by the interaction with the British actors?
Kotobuki: When I play a role, I think there is an image that “in the case of such a character, I play this way”, but when I see English actors, something completely different from the image comes to my head. In some cases, my rigid concept was broken.
I think after returning to Japan and I’ll start to go to auditions regularly again, but thanks to coming to the UK my acting range becomes wider, and now I can say, “I would like to play this way for this audition”.
――What role does Kotobuki-san want to play now?
Kotobuki: I want to play a villain with its own justice, which I haven’t played much before. There is a villain learning course called “Villain Course” in the English acting course, and my friend said, “It’s really interesting!”, so I’ll take it next time.
――This year is your 15th anniversary of the debut of a voice actress. I think you has played various roles in many works but is there any role that you feel was a turning point?
Kotobuki: There were many things. Each time is a turning point. But after all, the first turning point was “TIGER & BUNNY”. I was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of my seniors for their work and acting, and I received a lot of advice, so it was a great learning experience.
When I couldn’t play it well, Hirata Hiroaki, who played the role of Tiger, told me, “Do it this way”… Such a precious opportunity is rare!
I think that the shock and excitement I received from this work and the fun of creating the work are all connected to me now.
――Thank you very much!