KENN’s interview: VOICE Stars September 2017

Hello! This is the first translation I make, I did my best to be as accurate as possible!

But keep in mind that I’m not a professional translator, so there might me some mistakes here and there. And at some point, KENN was just blabbering about tempura, soba and food for TOO LONG, I got tired and I just summarized a bit. Sorry KENN, I’m not passionate about food like you! XD Anyway, ENJOY!


Born on 24rd March 1982. Tokyo.

Aries. Blood Type A.

While he’s standing in front of the camera, his expression changes like a switch.

Answering naturally the requests of the the word famous photographer, Leslie Kee, proving he can bring a fresh air while changing suddenly.

He was having fun in this photoshoot, when the photographer brought out “a new myself I didn’t know”.

I’m thankful I found a new myself with this photoshoot”.

Q: Thank you very much for answering all my requests. How long did it take to finish the photoshoot?

KENN: About 1 hour and half, even if it felt like a second. It was extremely fulfilling.

Q: It was fun looking closely at you, while you answered immediately my sudden requests, like “Try to sing”, “Look like an idol”.

KENN: The style of the photoshoop is really different, depending on the photographer.

There are some who are “free”, some who have requests or give me indications like today.

I think carefully about how I can obtain the kind of visual the photographer is embracing.

Today, while taking the pictures, I got many indications from Leslie san. I thought about the meaning of “being myself”and I had a lot of fun while confronting myself, it was really fulfilling.

Q: Today we planned of having a lot of close ups. Does it feel different from the usual attitude you have while doing other photoshoots, for example for anime?

KENN: It doesn’t change much, but when it comes to anime I may have to wear characters’ clothes, giving him a certain attitude. When I do photoshoots as my real self, on the contrary, something new about myself comes out. Today too, while answering the photographer’s requests, I assumed poses I’d never do normally and wore clothes that the stylist prepared for me, so a new myself came out. I think it’s fun and I’m grateful.

Q: While doing this photoshoot, did you add something with your own fashion sense? For example, suggesting the hair style you like?

KENN: Probably, there aren’t many opportunities when I can do that at work. Instead, in this situations, I think I can get to experience new worlds I still don’t know. So, when the hair stylist cuts my hair and sets it, when I get to think “ah, this hairstyle exists, too”; Lately I don’t wear hats often, but I feel like “there’s something like this, too”.

Q: What’s your favorite hair style? More than which one, is there an hair length which left a great impression to you?

KENN: If it was for me, I’d say it’s mostly short hair. But when it’s longer, it feels most adult-like and I’m fascinated. When the fringe is short, it feels more childish.

Q: After your 35th birthday, did you feel like “I want to express a more adult-like feeling”?

KENN: Yes, I did. Of course, I’m happy when I’m told that I’m young, but I want to look adult too.

But my face looks young, so I think the hair style and those dress they gave me, fit me properly.

For now, I want to take advantage of both ways, even if it’s greedy (laughs).

That’s why, sometimes I cut my hair short, but there are times when I grow it longer, like now. It’s moody, isn’t it? Maybe, the impression left by my hair length just now, in this moment, can make the difference between good photos or bad photos, I think. Probably (laughs).

Q: About this matter, do you usually take pictures of yourself?

KENN: Not that much… (laughs)

Q: Don’t you take many pictures?

KENN: For example, if I didn’t take pictures of the food I made to put them on my blog, I wouldn’t take that many.

Q: So you need a reason to take pictures.

KENN: Instead of saying this, in the first place, I’m not confident in myself… honestly, I’m also bad at taking pictures (laughs), there aren’t many pictures I’d like to take.

Q: So, something like selfie…..

KENN: I never do it. But at work, when there’s an event, I release a CD or I have to make an announcement, or if there’s someone happy to take a picture, at those moments I gladly get a picture taken. Out of social networks, I never took private pictures.

Q: Lately, there’s even a word called “インスタ映え, used mostly by girls when they go out eating and they take pictures of the dishes to put them on SNS. Don’t you understand a trend like this?

KENN: Of course I understand. Everyone takes pictures for their own reasons. I think girls who work hard for this are amazing.

I cook for myself. Doing if for friends would be embarrassing”

Q: Lately, how do you spend your free time after work? We can see on your blog that you’re good at cooking, you are really immersed, don’t you?

KENN: Yes, it’s true! Even if it’s summer, yesterday and the day before too, I ate noodles I made.

Q: This is not the season anymore, for soba.

KENN: Honestly, even if I really love noodles, soba is not good for my diet. But I like soya sauce very much. I want to try making various kind of soba. It shouldn’t be so hard… well, if I really try, it will probably end up being difficult.

Q: I really want to see a voice actor who makes soba at home. (laugh)

KENN gives me the vibe of a person who gets really immersed and focused on things!

KENN: When the passion comes, I keep going on!

Q: If it’s not soba, what do you like to cook lately?

KENN: I made tempura before.

Q: Great! To eat it yourself?

KENN: Yes! I haven’t made tempura often so far, but it was surprisingly good. When I decided to make it, it was truly difficult to match correctly the timing. I was waiting for the right moment, when the boiling soba was cold enough to be eaten, and fired the tempura.

Q: When did you do after it?

KENN: I ate in while standing in the kitchen (LAUGHS) I thought that bring it to the table would waste the timing…. but my manners are bad, aren’t them?

Q: It was all for eating it more deliciously! (LAUGHS) Since you work so hard, do you cook for your friends too?

KENN: It doesn’t happen very often. I cook for my own personal satisfaction. It’s embarrassing if someone tastes foods that I think are good.

Q: You are satisfied if you eat while thinking “it tastes good!”?

KENN: Yes, it’s like this! Thinking “I want a lot of people to taste this deliciousness!”it’s obsessive!

Q: You are humble, aren’t you?

KENN: Well, if someone says “I absolutely want to eat it!”, I’ll think about it! (LAUGHS) Once, while going back home, I made my mum taste it. If it’s my family it’s ok… but when it comes to other people it’s different, isn’t it?

Q: It doesn’t matter how close you are?

KENN: Exactly!

Q: Let’s stop the talk about cooking now.

Lately, who is the voice actor you are the closest to? When I interviewed Maeno Tomoaki san, he mentioned he was playing survival games with you.

KENN: We went there for work. I don’t go out often to play, I’m really an indoor person. But lately, sometimes I go out to play sports or drink with the others. Tecchan (Tetsuya Kakihara), (Aoi) Shouta, Hosoya (Yoshimasa) kun, Kaji (Yuki) kun, for example. Sometimes we get along after recording, sometimes we go out to drink.

Q: Are you strong to alcohol?

KENN: I’m weak. That’s why I almost don’t drink. (LAUGHS)

Q: So, when you go out to drink, if you taste some good food, do you think “I want to try cooking this!”?

KENN: Of course! It’s not when I’m out to drink, but the curry rice I often tasted in my favorite restaurant! I want to try creating that taste by myself, I thought about it often, but….

Q: It seems quite hard?

KENN: The taste’s direction is somehow similar, but I still can’t reach the one of the restaurant. But that place is closed now, so I can’t confirm the taste, and I can’t add the perfect ingredients or use the correct timing to cook.

Q: Your favorite restaurant is closed now, it’s sad not being able to eat your loved dishes.

KENN: It’s true. Also, that place was different from the usual restaurants that people imagine, it was familiar and the approach really worked. It was a place where I could eat relaxed, so I want to taste it again, even if I have to make it by myself.

I try to improve myself because of work”

Q: So, now that you’ve passed your 35th birthday, tell us what’s your goal for work.

KENN: I want to release an album I compose by myself. Music, lyrics, instruments, I want to do it all by myself. From the start to the end, I want to do everything alone.

Q: I see…

KENN: Obviously if there are pros who work on the album, it’s also amazing when they give me their work which has a professional approach and I realize how there are multiple forms of entertainment, but if an amateur like me does everything alone I often think about how it would turn out (LAUGHS).

Q: But since you have played instruments for a long time…

KENN: I’m terrible. If I had to do it alone, it would take me a lot of time. So, if I really decide to do it, it’s good if I’m not doing it as a job. If I’d work on it in private, I think it would increase my level of experience more than a job.

Q: Doing everything on your own would increase a lot your self confidence. Like “I could do this much!”

KENN: But if I’d do everything alone, I wouldn’t let anyone listen to it! I’d listen to it by myself!” (LAUGHS)

Q: Ehhh?? what a pity! Don’t you want other people to listen to your songs?

KENN: But it’s something I did for myself! (LAUGHS)

Q: When you complete good stuff, it’s enough when you are satisfied by yourself?

KENN: It’s the ultimate kind of solitude, isn’t it? (LAUGHS) If I do it as I please, just for myself, it’s not like something I would do for someone else. That’s what makes it different form work!

Q: How it’s your job as a seiyuu? Which are your goals?

KENN: Lately I think a lot about it, I want to become an exclusive. I want to dub foreign actors.

Q: Which ones would you like to dub?

KENN: More than thinking about which actors I’d like to dub, I’d like to become like those voice actors who have been dubbing for years. If I could be with them and grow my experience, I would be happy and thankful.

Q: Listening to what you’ve been telling us, I think your desires and goals are a lot.

KENN: No, I guess they aren’t a lot. It’s because it sounded like “I want the fame”?

Q: It’s because you are not like: “I want you to think my cooking is good!” or “I want you to approve the things I did on my own”. A lot of great people have the desire to be approved, and I think many strong people have this feeling of wanting to be recognized for their work.

That’s probably why they keep posting on SNS beautiful pictures.

KENN: They want to be told “it’s good!” don’t they? Honestly, I don’t want to stand out. It seems a contradiction, since I’m doing this kind of job! (LAUGHS) Maybe it could be some kind of shy way to stand out. Something like “I don’t want to be in front of people, but I want to do something”. Moody, isn’t it? (LAUGHS). When I was little I had no problem to appear in front of people. Growing older, I started to dislike it. It’s embarrassing, I’m not confident, but even if I don’t have confidence, I decided to pursue this kind of job. Since I’m doing this, maybe people like me who don’t like to stand out will be fine too. (LAUGHS)

During this interview, he said a lot of times “I’m not confident”.

Even if he said those words, I could understand from the attractive expression he made in front of the camera, from his everyday fun while cooking and from his ambitions, that he’s a person with a defined personality.

Cooking is for self-satisfaction, his hair style and fashion are not to please others.

Nowadays people who care too much about the approval of the others are increasing, so I felt like KENN’s style is really wonderful.

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