While Sarah Natochenny isn’t the original actress to portray Ash Ketch’em in the Pokémon anime, she’s the one to hold the position the longest, helming the role since all the way back in 2006. Now that role of a lifetime is coming to an end, and Natochenny is taking some time to reflect on it all.

In an interview with Kotaku, Natochenny reveals that she almost missed out on the audition for Ash completely, which would have no doubt been a huge career misstep!

“It was on a Monday, and I basically did not flip my at-a-glance calendar till that morning to remember that I had the audition for the biggest job of my life So I’m very, I’m so Ash Ketchum. It’s ridiculous.”

[Sarah Natochenny]

While things almost fell apart from the start for Natochenny, she thankfully made it to the audition, and the rest is history. Natochenny has been voicing Ash for well over a decade, and her work will forever be synonymous with not just the role, but Pokémon in general.

Natochenny’s work with the Pokémon anime is coming to an end, as Ash’s journey is wrapping up. Many thought Ash would go on forever, including Natochenny, which made it all the more shocking that the series is wrapping up.

“I had a very, very sad day of like, walking around Astoria and in very cold weather with no hat on. It was really sad. And then I got it together and thought about—when you take the focus off yourself, it becomes easier when you think about the multitudes of fans who are going to be affected by this, and that made me sad to think about how sad other people are. I’m still kind of crying about it.”

[Sarah Natochenny]

Natochenny had a lot more to say about playing the role of Ash, Pokemon fans in general, what the role has taught her and so much more. You can find the full interview here.


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