Magical Girl Site Voice Actors Show Off Their Idol Skills in Opening Theme Performance
posted on by Kim Morrissy
The idol and voice acting group i☆Ris first found fame through singing songs and providing voices for the PriPara franchise, and now they're back for a significantly darker tale about young girls in Magical Girl Site. Two members of i☆Ris are involved in Magical Girl Site: Himika Akaneya (who plays Tsuyuno Yatsumura) and Yū Serizawa (who plays Nijimi Anazawa). i☆Ris also sings the opening theme of the Magical Girl Site anime, named "Changing Point".
As they gear up for their fourth nationwide tour in April, the idol group performed their new single "Changing Point" for the very first time at an advance screening of the first Magical Girl Site episode on March 18. This was also the very first time they showed off the costumes for the new single, which will be their 16th to date.
"Changing Point" is a fairly upbeat and catchy pop song. The black motif behind the costumes struck me as extremely cool and fitting for the anime. The costumes were designed by Azuki Shibuya, one of the members of the group.
The entire show didn't just revolve around i☆Ris, however; the other voice actors also showed off their singing skills. Yuko Ōno (who plays the protagonist Aya Asagiri) and Himika Akaneya (the voice actor of Tsuyuno Yatsumura) performed their character songs, while Haruka Yamazaki (the voice actor of Sarina Shizukume) sang the ending theme.
It was Ōno's very first time doing a dance performance; her song was downbeat and mellow and didn't involve many complex movements. By contrast, Akaneya's dance part was very intense and elaborate, while Yamazaki's ED song was bright and peppy. There was a lot of variety to the music, and each singer made a strong impression.
It's clear that the music is one of the biggest selling points for the anime. The first episode of the anime hasn't even been broadcast on TV yet, but the bonus content for the first two volumes of the Blu-ray and DVDs have already been announced: not only will they include the music videos of the character songs, they will also include the “Making of” videos behind the music videos. The first printing of the limited edition Blu-ray and DVDs even include a ticket to apply for a concert featuring the voice actors, which is scheduled to happen at the end of November.
Besides music, the voice actors also talked about the anime itself and how much they were looking forward to being on it. Nobody shied away from the fact that the story of Magical Girl Site is very dark, and some of them even made jokes about it. The manga artist Kentaro Sato also appeared on stage to talk about the story of Magical Girl Site, and everyone discussed the appeal of the story. According to Ōno, the “warm friendship” between the two main characters was a key selling point for her.
As an extra touch, the stage was designed to look like the anime's first visual, and the actors turned up wearing the characters’ uniforms and outfits depicted in the anime. Ōno kept tripping over her words in excitement, which felt very of her. Aina Suzuki (the actor of Rina Shioi) was also very quirky and funny. Watching the cast interact made me feel like I was watching a cuter and more light-hearted side of the anime I'd just watched, which helped me appreciate a different side of the characters.
I didn't know much about the idol activities of these voice actors before watching their performances on Sunday, but I felt that the addition of music and concerts enriched the experience of watching these voice actors on stage. The “magical girl festa” event covered a lot of content in just two hours, including a screening of the anime's first episode, commentary on the show, the unveiling of Kizuna Ai as a voice actress in the anime, and live musical performances by the actors.
The show finished with the actors expressing their hope that the viewers will enjoy the Magical Girl Site anime when it comes out, while also hinting that there will be more musical pieces to enjoy in the anime that were not shown at the event. In particular, viewers should look out for episode 3, which will feature an ED sung by Yu Serizawa (actor of Nijimi Anazawa). Considering that Serizawa is playing an idol character in the anime, it will be interesting to see what role the music plays in the anime.