Sayaka Kanda, the voice actor of Sword Art Online the Movie: Ordinal Scale‘s Yuna, has passed away at 35.
NHK reported that Kanda was found on Saturday in an outdoor space of the 14th floor of the Sapporo hotel she was at staying at, due to an apparent fall from her room. She later passed away at the hospital she was taken to. The possibility of suicide is being looked into.
Kanda was meant to perform in a musical that day but had cancelled her performance, citing illness.
The daughter of actor Masaki Kanda and singer Seiko Matsuda, Kanda was born in Tokyo in 1986. Aside from Yuna, she has lent her voice to characters like Mana Nagase in Idoly Pride, Anna in the Japanese dub of Frozen, and Kaede Akamatsu in Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony.
In addition to voice acting, Kanda was involved in acting and singing. Some of her roles include Mihara O-Yoshi in Bean Cake, the winner of the Palme d’Or for best short film in 2001; Junko Enoshima in Super Danganronpa 2: Sayonara Zetsubou Gakuen THE STAGE 2017; and Sora in Saraba Kamen Rider Den-O: Final Countdown. As a singer, Kanda‘s work includes songs like the Atelier Ryza theme song “Rainbow Summer” and albums like 2018’s MUSICALOID #38, 2019’s MUSICALOID #38 Act.2, and 2021’s MUSICALOID #38 Act.3. She released her first single, “ever since,” in 2002, and was featured in her mother’s 1992 song, “Twinkle Star, Shining Star.”
Kanda was also involved in fashion as the label conductor of Maison de FLEUR Petite Robe canone. In a statement posted by the Maison de FLEUR Petite Robe Twitter page, the staff expressed their condolences and “heartfelt respect and appreciation” for Kanda and said that they will not forget the “warm and gentle times” they spent together.
*If you or someone you know needs help, the Befrienders can be reached via their international helplines.