Otaku USA Magazine
Spirited Away Stage Play Temporarily Called Off After Actress Gets COVID

People were getting themselves seated for the Spirited Away play at the Misono-za theater in Nagoya when it was announced the performance had been cancelled. Romi Park, who plays Yubaba and Zeniba in alternative performances, had been diagnosed with COVID.

Park said she was using precautions, but she has still caught the virus. She apologized to fans online who were disappointed to miss the play. Earlier this year the play went on hiatus when Kanna Hashimoto, one of the actresses playing Chihiro, also caught COVID.

The performances over the weekend were all called off. There will also be no performances today, but it’s possible that tomorrow, Tuesday, will see performances begin again. The play is traveling around Japan, and is in Nagoya until July 4.

Along with being a stage actress, Park is a well-known voice actress, whose talents can be heard in Fullmetal Alchemist, Attack on Titan, Naruto, Kill la Kill, and Digimon Adventure 02, among others.

Mari Natsuki is playing Yubaba and Zeniba when Park is not, and she was the voice actress who played these characters in the original movie. But actors tend to hang out with one another in preparation, and rather than have Natsuki take over, the play was cancelled altogether in case other people have been infected but not yet diagnosed.

The original Spirited Away movie is one of the most successful anime movies of all time, and GKIDS gave this description:

“Winner of the Academy Award® for Best Animated Feature, Hayao Miyazaki’s wondrous fantasy adventure is a dazzling masterpiece from one of the most celebrated filmmakers in the history of animation.

Chihiro’s family is moving to a new house, but when they stop on the way to explore an abandoned village, her parents undergo a mysterious transformation and Chihiro is whisked into a world of fantastic spirits ruled over by the sorceress Yubaba. Put to work in a magical bathhouse for spirits and demons, Chihiro must use all her wits to survive in this strange new place, find a way to free her parents and return to the normal world. Overflowing with imaginative creatures and thrilling storytelling, Spirited Away became a worldwide smash hit, and is one of the most critically-acclaimed films of all time.”

Source: ANN

Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin, plus its sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.