Taku Yashiro & Takeaki Masuyama (Voice Animage Vol. 45 2020)

八代 拓 & 益山武明

It will be the first appearance in this magazine as a unison 8P of drama and music that spreads the wings of the image. First, could you tell us about the project called 8P? Masuyama: It’s a project with 8 voice actors, which will be celebrating its 4th anniversary this year.

Why did you become a member? Masuyama: I don’t know the reason, but anyway, we started by fumbling about what the 8 of us could do, and we’re trying various things, such as songs, events, and drama CD’s. I don’t know how to describe it, but it’s like a jack-of-all-trades, a project that everyone walks together. Yashiro: That was a perfect explanation, so please divide the story into two and use half as my lines (laughs). Masuyama:  Hey (laughs). Yashiro: It’s exactly like that. As a nominal name, it is a project that “8 young male voice actors will challenge various things to improve their voice acting skills”. However, I feel that we are allowed to do what we like.

So, this time, it became a drama CD series that combines the theme song of the new drama and the story. Masuyama: I’ve read aloud before, but this is the first time I’ve released a drama and song as a single package, so I feel like it’s an extension of what I’ve done so far, but it’s a completely new challenge. We are the first in the series, so I’m excited to see how it will be received. Yashiro: I was looking forward to what kind of unison the drama and the song would create, but more than that, I was genuinely happy to be able to form a unit with Masuyama-san. Masuyama: I’m happy too.

This drama is a story set in the Heian period, but please introduce the roles you two play. Masuyama:  Fujiwara Kunitaka, who I play, is an aristocrat, but in the Heian period, birth and status were more important than today. But Kunitaka doesn’t get caught up in that kind of thing, he’s the type of person who treats everyone straight. Yashiro: It is a drama that is born by meeting with Ishibuki, a being that is far from the human world. He is an onmyoji, the main point of the story is his character, his innate personality, and his cleverness that makes him less considerate of the world and people. I think.

The unit song “Midori no yukue” has a Japanese taste just because it’s the theme song for the story. Masuyama:  The lyrics also include such old-fashioned words, so just listening to it will make you feel like you’re in the Heian period. As the title suggests, the motif of this song is the connection between people. Yashiro: When I found out about this project, I thought it would be wonderful if we could create a relationship where listening to the drama would make the song come to mind, and vice versa. When I listened to the song, I was happy because it linked more than I had imagined.

Did singing the unit song make it easier for you to play the character? Yashiro: Rather than making the characters easy, I feel that it was easier to immerse myself in the world of the story because I was inspired by the song. Masuyama: I also listened to the song all the time on the day of recording the drama while travelling. Yashiro: I think you’ll get into it. Masuyama: It’s a song that has a very close relationship with it, not only for listeners, but also for actors like us. A drama CD that is worth listening to and changes that occur in the exchange of acting. After all, isn’t it a spell of an onmyoji? When I listened to it, I thought that I was happy to play the role of a noble (laughs). Yashiro:  It was a rare experience to speak a list of words that I was completely unfamiliar with. But for Ishibuki, it should be a familiar word, so it’s even more difficult. Masuyama:  Everyone was holding their breath so that Ishibuki wouldn’t make a noise when he was casting spells and it wouldn’t be a retake (laughs). Yashiro: Thank you for your cooperation (laughs). For the time being, all the spells are spelled with furigana, but the list of hiragana is surprisingly difficult to read (laughs). I had a really valuable experience. But I think the drama itself it worth listening to. A story full of various characters appear, but only Kuroda is consistent among them. I felt the light of the story from Masuyama-san’s performance. Masuyama:  I didn’t act consciously (laughs). National high school does not change, but in contrast, Ishibuki is changing. If you listen to and compare the first conversation and the last exchange, you will find that the atmosphere is completely different. It was a very fun recording to be able to reciprocate such acting.

A booklet is also enclosed in the CD. How was the shooting? Masuyama: Actually, the first thing we did in this project was the photo shoot for the booklet. Anyway, the costume is amazing, it’s not a pure kimono but a modern arrangement, but the moment I put my sleeves through it, I felt a strange feeling that my back straightened. Yashiro: The shooting location was a Japanese house with a beautiful garden. There is also a torii gate in one corner. Isn’t it going to grow? The booklet doesn’t have a clear link to the drama, but there are scenes that somehow remind me of the story. I hope you will enjoy it together with the CD.

Please let me know if there were anything you would like to try with 8P in the future. Masuyama: I’ve read aloud at events before, but I’d like to do something like two hours full of just reading aloud. I practised properly like a play, and I wanted to challenge myself with 8 people. Yashiro: So even better, if you try a rock-paper-scissors tournament with a big cabaret, it might be fun in an 8P style (laughs). I think that the starting point of 8P is to do such stupid things will all one’s might. Masuyama: We have no idea what they will do in the future, but we will support them warmly.


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