Back in 2009, the anime K-ON! aired and with it, the group Houkago Tea Time. Back then, seiyuu groups were not as popular and widespread as they are now and having the seiyuu cast performing as their characters on stage was a rarity. It’s been more than 6 years since the airing of the first season and the seiyuu have all went on their paths. Let’s take a look where they are now!
Satomi Satō who voiced Ritsu Tanaka
Satomi Satō or Shuga as nicknamed, has had success with her anime roles, voicing Wendy Marvell from Fairy Tail as well as Ujimatsu Chiya from Gochuumon wa Usagi Desu Ka?. Over the seasons she has consistently landed roles in anime, usually voicing characters with soothing voices, a stark contrast to her role of Ritsu, which is a more tomboyish role. In fact, she managed to clinch the Best New Actress award at the 5th Seiyuu Awards.
On top of that, she also had her own radio show ” Rajio☆Satomi Hakkenden!” which aired from 2011 to 2014 along with various other radios that were tied to her various anime roles. In 2014, she had her solo debut with “Mirai Night” for the anime Seitokai Yuuindomo.
Just recently, she hit her 30th birthday and celebrated it with the rest of the cast of GochiUsa at the Rabbit Tea House Party event. She has maintained her number of roles even amongst the flood of newcomer seiyuu and with a new GochiUsa special episode to be aired in the near future, let’s hope we can continue to hear from her!
Yōko Hikasa who voiced Mio Akiyama
Nicknamed Hiyocchi, Yōko Hikasa anime roles after K-ON will leave you slightly amazed. Especially after Megumi Hayashibara’s recent statement on how the lifespan of seiyuu have greatly shortened. Based on a summary by a Japanese fan, she ranked fifth in terms of the number of roles in 2015 with 22 roles. Which is definitely great news for fans who love her voice.
Already being well known for her singing prowess in K-ON as Mio, she finally had her solo debut in 2013, singing the ending theme to the popular anime Shingeki no Kyojin. She also sang songs for other anime such as Diamond no Ace and Z/X Ignition. Although she has not released any new singles recently, we can hope that we will be hearing from her again soon.
At the end of 2015, she announced that she has gotten married earlier that year, and that could explain why she has slowed down slightly with her solo work. However, with the number of roles that she had in 2015, she definitely isn’t slowing down with her anime roles! I’m sure we will continue to hear from her in the future!
Toyosaki Aki who voiced Yui Hirasawa
Arguably one of the more popular seiyuu among the K-ON cast, Aki has won the Best New Actress at the 4th Seiyuu Awards and the Best Lead Actress and Best Personality Award at the 5th seiyuu award, she was definitely one of the top seiyuu in 2011. Her light and bubbly voice definitely struck a chord with everyone.
She is also the host of her own radio “Toyosaki Aki’s Okaeri Radio” which has aired since 2010 and is still airing. With such a long air time, it definitely says a lot to its popularity. To add to that, she also has her solo career as a singer and released her 3rd Album in March 2016 where it was 10th on the Japanese Oricon Charts. She is also part of the seiyuu unit Sphere alongside fellow K-ON seiyuu Minako Kotobuki as well as Haruka Tomatsu and Ayahi Takagaki.
Although she has fewer roles lately, she has been branching out and even was a weather girl at one point in time. We can definitely see that she is doing more than just voicing characters, maybe in the future we will get to hear more of her again!
Kotobuki Minako who voiced Tsumugi Kotobuki
The youngest of the K-ON cast, Minako was only 18 when the anime first aired but already had a concrete start to her seiyuu career. Although she has not been getting as many roles lately, she was part of the recent Hibike Euphonium movie where she voices Asuka Tanaka, which is definitely a movie that I am looking forward to.
Like Aki Toyosaki, she is a member of sphere as well and also has her own solo singing career, with 10 singles and 2 albums to her name. Her 10th single, “Bye Bye Blue” was released March this year and was 23rd on the Japanese Oricon Charts. Personally, I find her singing voice really unique and nice to listen to and will definitely look forward to any of her new works.
Ayana Taketatsu who voiced Azusa Nakano
Ayana Taketatsu or Ayachi is best known for voicing both tsundere and cat-like characters. Being the main cast for popular shoes like Ore no Imouto ga Konnani Kawaii Wake ga Nai and Sword Art Online, she has maintained her popularity and roles over the years.
Like the rest of the cast of K-ON, she also has her own solo singing career with her singing the ending theme of the anime Dagashi Kashi. Her 9th single, Miss Revolutionist will be released on 22nd June this year, so keeps your ears open for that! In addition, she is also part of the seiyuu unit petit milady alongside Aoi Yuuki where they have performed the opening theme song to the currently airing anime Pan de Peace!.
For those of you who were fortunate enough to attend AFA 2015, you may have had the chance to meet her and see her perform at the I Love Ani-song concert as well! Maybe we can look forward to seeing her coming back again?
As we can see, there are some similarities in the paths that all these seiyuu have taken. For example, they all have their own solo careers after K-ON with varying levels of success. At the same time there are also differences in the main focus of their jobs. It is interesting to look back 6 years and see the journey that they have taken. It will be interesting to see how the seiyuu we know and love will move forward and progress with their careers.