Home Interview: Rika Hayashi Talks First Major Role and Bringing Tonbo to Life

Interview: Rika Hayashi Talks First Major Role and Bringing Tonbo to Life

Anime Corner recently got an opportunity to interview the staff and cast of the currently ongoing Tonbo anime adaptation. At the time, not much about the series was known overseas as the manga was never licensed. The trailers promised a lot of fun for fans of gold and sports anime while introducing a cast with veteran names and a newcomer in the lead. Rika Hayashi, who voices the titular Tonbo Oi, took the time to answer a few of our questions about the role, her co-cast, and what got her into voice acting.

Q: Tonbo will be your first major anime voice-acting role. Are you excited about the project? What can we expect from the adaptation?

A: I am very excited. I am playing the role of Tonbo to the best of my ability, and I hope many people will enjoy “Tonbo! “

Q: Can you tell us a bit about the character you voice? How did you come up with her voice – how did you decide what she should sound like?

A: Tonbo is a very free-thinking child. She is also so powerful that Igaiga could mistake her for a boy. I was conscious of playing her powerfully.

Q: Not only are you voicing the titular character, but you are also featured in the ending theme. Could you tell us a bit more about the experience – how did the recording go? Do you hope to be featured on more tracks in the future?

A: It was a very enjoyable recording! I sang while thinking of everyone and the scenery in Tokara.

Q: What was it working like with Hiroki Touchi? Your characters have a close bond and the dynamic between them greatly affects the story.

A: On the first day of post-recording, I was quite nervous to talk to him, but as the sessions went on, I felt very comfortable when Tochi-san was with me. I thought that Tonbo must have felt happy to have Igaiga.

Q: Have you read the manga prior to getting the role?

A: I read the original story for the first time during the audition. It was very interesting and I quickly read it up to the latest chapter. I found the story of the characters to be very nice, not to mention the expert commentary on golf.

Q: Do you usually read manga or watch anime? Do you have a favorite series?

A: I love both manga and anime. I especially love “Aim for the Ace”!

Q: How did you end up becoming a voice actor? What were the biggest challenges in the process?

A: I was hospitalized during my childhood and watched anime every day. The way the characters lived their lives gave me a lot of strength. I thought it would be wonderful if my voice could support someone someday, so I decided to become a voice actor. The hardest thing for me was to keep trying, and I still feel that it is hard.

Q: Do you play golf in your spare time? How much knowledge of the sport did you have going into the Tonbo project?

A: When I was in elementary school, I was taken to the hitting range. I have been practicing as much as I can since I got the role of Tonbo. I have a general knowledge of the knowledge and rules, but I am not familiar with the terminology.

Q: And finally, do you have a message for overseas anime fans who will be watching Tonbo this spring?

A: It is filled with exciting golf scenes, heartwarming human drama, and many interesting aspects! We hope you enjoy Tonbo! Please enjoy it!

We’d like to thank Rika Hayashi and the Tonbo thing for making this interview happen. We’re wishing them all the best with the anime and future endeavours! Make sure to check it out.

©Ken Kawasaki & Yu Furusawa/Tonbo Project

The Tonbo! anime is streaming on Amazon Prime, It’s Anime, ADN (Germany, France), AKIBA PASS TV (Germany), aniverse (Germany. within Amazon channel), Jonu Play (Spain), Anime Generation (Italy, within Amazon Channel), Spacetoon (Middle East). Bilibili (Brunei, Cambodia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, Malaysia), Wavve (Korea), Tving (Korea), Watcha (Korea), Naver Serieson (Korea), Bflix (Korea), iQIYI (Hong Kong, Taiwan, Macau, Indonesia, Cambodia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Brunei, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos, Timor-Leste), CubMu (Indonesia), MyVideo (Taiwan), KKTV (Taiwan), HamiVideo (Taiwan), LiTV (Taiwan), Line TV (Taiwan)

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