Casting announced for the return of My Neighbour Totoro

Posted on 29 September 2023

Executive Producer Joe Hisaishi, in partnership with the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) has revealed the full cast for the highly acclaimed stage adaptation of Studio Ghibli's beloved My Neighbor Totoro. Set to make a limited return to The Barbican, My Neighbour Totoro will run from November 21, 2023, to March 23, 2024.

This coming-of-age story teaches us about the beauty of childhood imagination and its transformative power. Join sisters Satsuki and Mei on what is about to be the most magical summer of their lives.

The cast of My Neighbour Totoro 

Mei Mac will reprise her Olivier and WhatsonStage Award-nominated performance as Mei Kusakabe with Ami Okumura Jones returning as older sister Satsuki, alongside Dai Tabuchi in his role as Tatsuo and Jacqueline Tate as Granny.

Also returning as Kazego Puppetry ensemble are; Boaz Chad, Jasmine Chiu, Andrew Futaishi (Hiroshi), Matthew Leonhart, Arina Ii (Miss Hara), Yojiro Ichikawa, Si Rawlinson, Mark Takeshi Ota and Shaofan Wilson.

Joining them are; Jessie Baek, Jasmine Bayes, Ka Long Kelvin Chan (Kanta), Elizabeth Chu, Anna Kato, Heather Lai, Amanda Maud (Nurse Emiko), Yuki Nitta, Bright Ong, Emily Piggford (Yasuko), Daniel Phung, Gun Suen and Naomi Yang (Tsukiko).

The creatives of My Neighbour Totoro 

Directed by Improbable’s Phelim McDermott with production design by Tom Pye, costume design by Kimie Nakano, lighting design by Jessica Hung Han Yun, and movement by You-Ri Yamanaka. Puppetry design and direction is by Basil Twist, created with puppetry associate Mervyn Millar’s Significant Object and the Jim Henson Creature Shop.

The production features music from Joe Hisaishi’s iconic score in a new orchestration by Will Stuart, performed by live musicians including singer, Ai Ninomiya, with sound design by Tony Gayle. Video design is by Finn Ross and Andrea Scott. Casting Director is Hannah Miller CDG. Associate Director is Ailin Conant.

What is My Neighbour Totoro about?

In order to be closer to their mother while she recovers from an illness in a rural convalescent hospital, Satsuki and Mei’s father moves the family to the countryside. As the girls explore their beautiful new surroundings, Mei encounters magical creatures and the ancient protector of the forest she calls Totoro.

Although Satsuki doesn’t believe her little sister at first, they are soon both swept up in exciting adventures with their new neighbours – transported to a long-forgotten realm of spirits, sprites, and natural wonder.

My Neighbour Totoro tickets can be booked now

Don’t let My Neighbour Totoro London tickets fly by like little forest spirits! 

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By Kevin Thomas

From as early as I can recall, writing has always been my passion. Being able to combine this with my love for theatre has been a rewarding and exhilarating experience. I truly believe that there is magic in seeing a story brought to life on stage, and this is what I would like to promote to audiences.