Sad news has come this past week with the death of japanese anime seiyuu (voice actress), Tomoko Kawakami. This news is quite heart-breaking to both the anime world and her fans.

Many know the veteran voice actress as many different characters she has played over the years, such as Soi Fon from Bleach, Fuuyuki from Sgt. Frog, Sayuri from Kanon, Hikaru from Hikaru no Go and Utena from Revolutionary Girl Utena.

She was hospitalised in 2008 with an unidentified illness. She hadn’t returned to voice acting since the hospitalisation and it has now been confirmed that she tragically passed away on the 9th of June after a long battle with ovarian cancer.

R.I.P. Tomoko Kawakami, you may have left this world, but your voice will still be heard.

Related Articles for this post below:
Senior Editor & Anime Specialist
  • Ti-Pi from Tokyo

    The picture doesn’t seem to be Tomoko’s. It might be easier to search pics with the Japanese name “川上とも子”, since we have a lot of homophonic names in Japanese.

    And actually she played in several animes such as Sgt. Frog (Movie 4), Darker than Black, Harukanaru 3 and Nodame Cantabile,
    during her fight against ovarian cancer almost for 3 years after the hospitalisation in August 2008.

    • Luke Halliday

      It is Tomoko in her younger years.

      My news source didn’t mention any work during the 3 years. All sources tell me that she didn’t work during that time and her characters where voiced by replacements imitating her voice.

      • Ti-Pi from Tokyo

        Thank you for your response.

        I find the picture in the following blog entry:
        http://pamerane.blog89.fc2.com/blog-entry-518.html
        She is “河上智子”, not “川上とも子”. They might be confused since both names have the same pronunciation.
        You can find a lot of her pics with the keyword “川上とも子”.

        Her works during the 3 years are summarised in the article of Japanese Wikipedia:
        http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%B7%9D%E4%B8%8A%E3%81%A8%E3%82%82%E5%AD%90#.E7.99.82.E9.A4.8A.E4.B8.AD.E3.81.AE.E5.87.BA.E6.BC.94
        (sorry for Japanese)
        The same thing is mentioned in the English article as well.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomoko_Kawakami#Illness_and_death

        • Luke Halliday

          I will alter the picture to a confirmed picture as the picture used is in question, out of respect for Ms. Kawakami and her work.

          In response to the wikipedia article you listed.
          Wikipedia is capable of being edited and changed by anyone.
          It is difficult to determine whether it was indeed her who performed or her replacement.

          If you can provide me with a more official confirmation of her work during the 3 years I will alter the article.

          • Ti-Pi from Tokyo

            Thank you for altering the picture.

            Actually both parts of the articles are mostly based on what I wrote. The sources are anime programmes themselves and a Japanese magazine (shown in the articles), and I’m afraid there should be no good sources on the web. I respect your attitude avoiding unconfirmed information.

            I saw a lot of her fans in Japan are greatly impressed with this article.

          • Luke Halliday

            Thank you, I appreciate your comment. I hope that my article has shown both Ms. Kawakami and her fans the respect and sensitivity deserved.

            I am glad they are impressed, I can only hope they continue to follow my work on this site.

      • Ti-Pi from Tokyo

        Anyway, thank you very much for your article. I really apreciate it as a fan in Japan.

        • Luke Halliday

          It is no problem, we are mainly a video gaming website, but also feature anime and manga related news.
          Her death, is very tragic and I was personally rather upset by this news. As respect to her, I was compelled to write this report.
          Please continue to visit our site, as we expand across the world, including Japan.

          R.I.P Ms. Kawakami

Lost Password

Sign Up