Best known for her role as Kagome Higurashi in VIZ's InuYasha, we managed to get in touch with Moneca Stori and asked her about her role in this very popular anime series
Active Anime: Did you have to audition for the part or did the voice director already have you in mind?
Moneca Stori: I was very fortunate that I was asked to record the voice for the promo or trailer for Inuyasha. Much later I discovered that I got the part of Kagome for the Inuyasha series, and I believe it was because of the trailer. I’m not sure what the decision-makers had in mind, but I’m glad I got the part!
Active Anime: What, if any, preparations do you make before recording?
Moneca Stori: I read the scripts usually the day before recording. On the morning of a recording session I warm up my voice by doing vocal exercises. This includes singing song and scales and trying on different voices. I also find that exercising my whole body by going for a walk or to the gym helps!
Active Anime: Since the last episode has already aired in Japan, what are your feelings towards the imminent end of the series?
Moneca Stori: It’s hard to believe.
Active Anime: Since you're the voice of Kagome, let's consider you the resident InuYasha expert.
Moneca Stori: Hmm, well do you mean InuYasha the half demon, or InuYasha the show of the same name? I’m familiar with them both. One of them I’m in love with…
Active Anime: Why is Kagome sometimes unnecessarily mean to InuYasha?
Moneca Stori: Women are complex. Maybe he should buy her some chocolate.
Active Anime: When in battle, there are times when Kagome's sacred arrow would come in handy, why do you think she just stands there like a damsel in distress?
Moneca Stori: Well, in my opinion, it does no damage to the women’s movement to be saved by the creature you love every now and again. If that means ya gotta faint or be a damsel, well I say it’s worth it. Think of all of that extra quality time she’s collecting!
Active Anime: Do you feel that sometimes she overdoes it with the "sit" commands?
Moneca Stori: No, but I think I know what you think about this.
Active Anime: When InuYasha visits Kagome in her time, wouldn't a modern suit of clothes help him be a little more inconspicuous than just the baseball cap?
Moneca Stori: Absolutely. Some demons you can take them out but you can’t dress them up.
Active Anime: Okay, back to reality. Does anyone recognize your voice in everyday life? If so…
Moneca Stori: Usually people find out through conversation that I’m on the show first, and then say “Oh! You sound just like her!” It isn’t too strange for me but it might be a little strange for them.
Active Anime: How do you handle being "glomped"?
Moneca Stori: I don’t. I leave that to my bodyguards.
Active Anime: Do you have anything in common with Kagome Higurashi?
Moneca Stori: Well, I’d say I’m a bit of a girly-girl like her & feisty too. I try and do the right thing and balance my heart with some common sense.
Active Anime: What traits of hers would you like to have, if you could?
Moneca Stori: I just don’t look that good when I camp.
Active Anime: Are there any projects out there you'd love to sink your teeth into, so to speak?
Moneca Stori: Well, there are many projects and ideas that I have or that one hears about. I like to do things that impact people in some kind of positive way. Any ideas?
Active Anime: Which do you prefer, as far as an actress…. being a heroine, you know, your typical good girl or being the villain?
Moneca Stori: It can be really fun to play a villain, though it’s also enjoyable finding the nuances in any character that an audience can relate to and say, “that’s just like me”, or “I know someone just like that”. It goes deeper for me than is she good or bad. It’s more about what is the story and can the audience connect to this character? Can I make them laugh, or capture their attention or touch their hearts? A well-written character might do all of these things, whether she is good or bad.
Active Anime: If and when InuYasha truly comes to an end, will it be like losing a piece of yourself or is it just another job done well?
Moneca Stori: I really don’t view it that way! When I work on a show, especially something that has been a part of my life for a few years(!), it isn’t just a job. I am fond of the characters and the show and the people I work with. It’ll be a little strange for it to be over.
Active Anime: We thank you for taking the time for this interview. Are there any parting words you like to leave with our audience?
Moneca Stori: Follow your heart and use your head! Read books, do your best, and be kind to people. Stay in school, work hard, and laugh! Thank you for watching the show. I mean that. I really appreciate it.
Active Anime.com would like to thank VIZ Media and The Ocean Group for making this interview possible, and we would like to thank Moneca Stori for agreeing for this interview – We Love You Moneca!
About Moneca Stori:
A veteran in the animated industry and known for such roles as Kagome Higurashi in InuYasha and Sally Poe in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing, Moneca Stori has also appeared in short films such as Temping Fate (Winner – Best Comedy Film at the 2000 Sea To Sky Film Festival) and Wake Up Call, whom she co-wrote.
Interview Conducted April 2005