Still remember that haunting sounds of “Inner Universe”, the opening for Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex?
It was sung by Russian singer, Origa (real name Ol’ga Yakovleva) who went on to sing for a few more series in Ghost in the Shell franchise namely 1st Gig, 2nd Gig and Solid State Society. Sadly, voice actress Jenya confirmed on her official Twitter account that Origa passed away on Saturday due to lung cancer. She was 44 years old.
攻殻機動隊の主題歌などで有名なロシア人シンガーソングライター、オリガ 儀 (44歳)が、平成27年1月17日、肺がんの為永眠いたしました。日本でロシアの歌が愛されるように心を込めて頑張ってきたオリガさん、まだ若くて素敵な方で…言葉もないです。 心よりご冥福をお祈りします。
— ロシア人声優・ジェーニャ (@jenya_jp) January 18, 2015
Origa first came to Japan on a home stay program after studying at the Novosibirsk Specialized Music School from 1986 to 1990 and was subsequently signed up by EMI Japan in 1995. Her breakthrough in Japan came when Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex 1st Gig first aired with the opening theme “Inner Universe“. Her haunting and unique Russian vocals which accompanied the catchy, electronic pulses of the song with a lack of J-pop beats won accolades from the fans worldwide.
She didn’t stop at the cyperpunk franchise either as she also sang for other anime including the themes for Fantastic Children, Princess Arete, as well as games like Gust and Ar nosuge. Yoko Kanno, the prolific music composer in the anime industry of Japan was a good friend and long time collaborator of the singer and undoubtedly some of the best songs and themes we’ve heard from the anime music world was a result of their work.
We hope you find your Inner Universe Origa. Rest in peace.
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