Heidi: A Girl of the Alps Voice Actress Won Title Role Thanks to Catching a Cold
posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
Famed director Isao Takahata's 1970s television anime Heidi - A Girl of the Alps found its star in Kazuko Sugiyama. Sugiyama, who was 26 years old at the time, auditioned for the role despite having come down with a cold. Her illness altered the sound of her voice to a lower, husky-like tone.
"It turned out to be the right voice for an ordinary girl," Sugiyama said. She shared the story at the "Memorial Screening of Isao Takahata 1 - Considering Isao Takahata's "Reality" - Heidi - A Girl of the Alps/From the Apennines to the Andes/Anne of Green Gables" event at Cinema Rosa in Ikebukuro. She was joined by Heidi character designer Yôichi Kotabe and current ANIDO head Takashi Namiki.
The event screened the first episodes of Heidi, Marco - From the Apennines to the Andes, and Anne of Green Gables. Kotabe discussed the level of detail Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki put into the Heidi series, going so far as to spend a month in Switzerland to observe the location. Kotabe said the pair would observe the smallest details, like the way a door opened toward the outside or inside of a house.
The presentation was held as part of the Tokyo Anime Award Festival held from March 8 to March 11.