Kanae Ito Interview @ FanimeCon 2017
While in San Jose for Fanime-Con 2017, we sat down behind closed doors, with the voice actress Kanae Ito, who is best known for her work as Amu Hinamori in Shugo Chara!, Yui in Sword Art Online, Nobuna Oda in The Ambition of Nobuna Oda, Elsie de Lute Ima in The World God Only Knows, and Nana Astar Deviluke in To Love-Ru.
TONO: Can you give us your thoughts of FanimeCon 2017 so far?
Kanae Ito: While I was walking from my hotel to the convention, I saw a few cosplayers, which makes it seem like the whole city is really into it. So it’s a very lively atmosphere and exciting to walk around. I am having lots of fun.
TONO: Have you seen anyone cosplaying as any of your characters so far?
Kanae Ito: I haven’t seen anyone dress as one of my characters yet, but I have seen people dress as characters from some of the series I have been in. At my panel earlier, I saw someone dress up as a character from A Certain Scientific Railgun Toaru Kagaku no Rerugan, Ruiko Saten
TONO: How was it seeing all your fans at your panel?
Kanae Ito: I was really happy to see all those people gathered for my panel.
TONO: At your panel, you spoke about your character Amu from Shugo Chara! and how she resembles you in real life, can you tell us more about that?
Kanae Ito: My family members are the ones that tell me that Amu is exactly like how I am in daily life. So that’s why she holds a special place in me.
TONO: So your also known as Yui from Sword Art Online can you tell us about the audition process?
Kanae Ito: For Sword Art Online it didn’t take place at an audition studio. Instead, we sent in a recorded demo to the agency. However, for Shugo Chara!, I did have to send in a tape and then there was a second call which I had to audition in person at the studio.
TONO: So you played Yui for Sword Art Online season 1, season 2, and the movie Ordinal Scale. Now that we know that there will be a third season to Sword Art Online how do you feel about reprising your role of Yui?
Kanae Ito: I am really excited about returning for season three. When we were recording Ordinal Scale, I couldn’t wait to see Yui on the big screen as the battle scenes from the movie were just so amazing.
TONO: Speaking of Sword Art Online- Ordinal Scale, what scene was your favorite that you really liked?
Kanae Ito: My favorite scene would have to be the one that takes place inside their in-game house, where Yui was in her child form and Papa Kirito is comforting Mama Asuna because she lost her memories. That scene really touched me and I really like it.
TONO: Have you meet your English counterpart for Yui, Stephanie Sheh?
Kanae Ito: No, I have never met her but the Japanese cast all saw the English version and I think she did a good job.
TONO: Well we attended the English premiere of Sword Art Online- Ordinal Scale and during the Q&A she said that the English cast watched the Japanese episodes and modeled their performances after your voices. Also, she said she would love to meet you in person as well.
Kanae Ito: Her voice is really cute and lovely and I would like to meet her in person as well.
TONO: How did you start your music career?
Kanae Ito: At first, I auditioned for the main character of Taisho Baseball Girls, Taisho Yakyu Musume and got the part. The staff ended up asking me if I wanted to sing the ending for the series after I sang in a scene where she had a musical dream. That was how I started my music career.
TONO: Where do want your music career to go from here?
Kanae Ito: At the moment I am working on an album that is going to be released at the end of the year. I can’t say for sure, but I really want to do a live performance for the CD release. I really hope it does happen.
TONO: Would you like to perform a live concert next time you come to the states?
Kanae Ito: I have never done a live concert overseas, so I don’t know what to say. I have been singing since 2009 but I still get nervous when I sing in front of people but I will do my best!
Interviewer: Ken Dubois, Transcriber: Salvador Mateos, Photos: Theodore Mak, Editor: Joanna Alcala
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