Voice Actors are treated as celebrities in Japan with names like Yukari Tamura, Nana Mizuki, Kana Hanazawa, Aya Hirano and Mamoru Miyano all having strong fan bases and are known for selling out venues whenever they have concerts and other events. The annual Seiyu Awards celebrate the achievements of these individuals voicing our favorite anime characters and for its upcoming 8th edition, the award’s official website has announced several of the winners which are a who’s who of Japanese voice actors.


The late Kenji Utsumi and the late Ryoko Kinomiya sadly both passed away last year but the Seiyu Awards are giving both voice acting legends a posthumous Lifetime Achievement Award. Both Utsumi and Kinomiya have contributed greatly to the voice acting industry. Utsumiya is known for voicing Raoh from Fist of the North Star while Kinomiya served as the narrator for Saint Young Men and Hell Teacher Nube.

Kenji Utsumi


Ryoko Kinomiya


The Merit Award meanwhile goes to Keaton Yamada and Rokuro Naya. The Merit Award is awarded to voice actors who have greatly contributed to many genres in the industry including foreign works. Yamada voiced Cyborg 009’s Albert Heinrich and Master Keaton’s Narrator while Naya has voiced Yu Yu Hakusho villain Sensui and Eureka Seven Ao’s Christophe Blanc.

Keaton Yamada


Rokuro Naya


The Synergy Award is given to works which have demonstrated the appeal of voice acting to its fullest and with the celebrity status bestowed upon its voice cast thanks to its popularity, it is given to Girls und Panzer. Mai Fuchigami, who voices Miho Nishizumi in the anime, will be speaking on behalf of the show.


The Kei Tomiyama Award meanwhile will be given to Shinichiro Miki who is known for voicing Akira Yuuki from the Virtua Fighter video game series, Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood’s Roy Mustang, and the Dylandy brothers/ Lockon Stratos, Neil and Lyle from Gundam 00. The Kei Tomiyama Award is given to male voice actors who broadens the profession of voice acting in all forms of media.


The Kazue Takahashi Award meanwhile is the female counterpart of the Kei Tomiyama Award and it is given to Sailor Moon’s voice actress, Kotono Mitsuishi. She is also known for voicing One Piece’s Boa Hancock and Dead or Alive’s Christie (Japanese version).


The other winners will be announced during the awards ceremony on March 1, 2014. Winners of previous awards include Kana Asumi (Best Actress in leading role), Mamoru Miyano (Best Actor) in leading role and Ai Kayano (Best New Actress Award).

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Source: Seiyu Awards official


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