Kari Walgren was born on July 13, 1977, in Hoisington, Kansas. As a child, young Kari was inspired by Disney princesses and other animation characters. Her parents worked as teachers and subsequently encouraged their daughter when she in high school began working with charities and organisations promoting reading and education.
At the age of 11, Kari and his family made the journey to California. During this trip they visited the Focus on the Family building and there Kari offered to play the small role of an 11-year-old character named Gloria McCoy in their radio production of “Adventures in the Odyssey”.
Walgren received her education at the University of Kansas. She graduated from it in 1999 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre. After that, she moved to Kansas City, Missouri, where she starred in several radio broadcasts.
In 2000, the actress moved to Los Angeles to work on her acting career. In an interview with Lawrence Journal-World magazine, she said she couldn’t get a job on camera, so she put all her strength into voiceover. Her experience of studying Shakespeare helped her greatly in thinking about roles: playing different characters, she made different accents for them respectively to a certain historical period.
debut role for Kari Walgren in 2002 was the voice role of Haruko Haruhara in the anime series “FLCL”, consisting of 6 episodes. In an interview with “Anime Tourist” magazine, she said Haruko was the only character she auditioned for. She played her character as a hero close to the historical original but with some American interpretation to attract audiences. Depending on the plot, she changed her character’s voice from cartoonish and childish to realistic. Critic Bryce Coulter of Mania.com later wrote an article about her that impressed the character of her hero: “Walgren definitely gave Haruko the character of twenty with something sarcastic and punky characters” . Subsequently, in 2018, Walgren took part in voicing new seasons of “FLCL. Progressive” and “FLCL. Alternative”, where she became the voice of her character Haruhar.
The next major voice role was played by Kari in Valgren’s anime “Witch Hunter Robin”, where Walgren voiced the title character Robin Sena, a modest young girl who joins to a group of witch hunters, but also possesses some magical powers, which brings her with witches. Zach Berchie of Anime News Network wrote in his article that her voice is “pleasant, tone, and perfect for the role” and wanted the rest of this picture’s voices to show such qualities as well.
Walgren voiced the main character Lavi Head in the steampunk-style fantasy series “The Last Link”. Allen Deavers of Anime News Network recognized then Kari as “one of the most famous names of the voice-over scene in California.”
Walgren later voiced lead character Sakura Kinomoto on the entertainment program “Bang Zoom!” , re-recorded “Cardcaptor Sakura Movie 2: The Sealed Card”. The latter work was noted by Allen Divers (critic from Anime News Networks) to a superb degree: “The voice actors did an excellent job juxtaposing the emotions of the original Japanese voices, including Sakura’s signature expression “Hoe!” , which was greatly lacking in previous English-language adaptations.”
In the works with live actors, Walgren starred as Tinkerbell in Peter Pan’s independent film “Neverland”, released in 2003. Her character has been described as a “sullen and sullen coward”.
In 2004, she played the title role in the animated feature film “Steamboy” with actors such as Anna Paquin, Patrick Stewart and Alfred Molina. In it, she played the teenage Scarlett, the granddaughter of a corporation president who was spoiled, cruel and annoying to everyone. Critic Peter Sanderson of IGN called Scarlett’s character one of the most obnoxious characters he has ever encountered. In the same 2004, Walgren voiced Chiku Minazuki in the anime “Ai Yori Aoshi”, who was the sister of the protagonist’s little cousin. This heroine was described by critics as an energetic, innocent and simple girl, but strongly contrasting with the central character.
In 2005, Walgren voiced the role of protagonist Fuu Kasumi in the anime “Saimrai Shamplu”. Critics then noted that Walgren’s voice was “appropriate for her personality”, but pointed out that over time Fuu’s voice would “come to sound just like any other anime girl.”
In the anime “Scrapped Princess”, the actress voiced the main character Pacifica Casull, who is being hunted because of a prophecy that she would cause the destruction of the world if she lived to her 16th birthday. The Krtics noted Walgren’s work as “cold-blooded and deeply sensitive, but distinguished from other Japanese characters by the lack of some haughtness.”
creativity in video games
Walgren has been the voice of many characters in video games. She first voiced Willow Rosenberg in the video game “Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. Bloody chaos.” She voiced the James Bond girl paired in Sean Connery in the video game “From Russia with Love”, released in 2005. In 2008 she voiced the main character Ash in Final Fantasy XII and the main character Silk in Dirge of Cerberus — Final Fantasy VII. In interviews with the UFFSite and RGSite websites, the actress recounted that the franchise was like “the holy grail of acting in video games.” Asha she played in a regal tone, as in her opinion he looks like “intelligent, diplomatic and capable of kicking ass.” Silk’s voice, by contrast, she portrayed very cold and insensitive. Also in 2007, Walgren voiced the playable title character in the strategic RPG “Joan of Arc”.
Career of a podcast commentator
Since 2004, Walgren has become involved as a sunset commentator in animation. For the first time as a narrator, she performed in the superhero action ensemble Disney/Jetix Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! This show ran for 4 seasons from 2004 to 2006. She had recurring roles as villains Samantha “Magness” Payne in “ATOM” and Charkmaster in “Ben 10″. In 2007, she voiced Taka’s girlfriend Jira in Nickelodeon’s animated series “So and the Power of Juju”. Voiced sister Susie Johnson in the Disney series “Phineas and Ferb”, she participated in the second season of the animated comedy “Lily and Bush”, where she voiced Lily Hilary and Lily Condi.
Walgren became a regular actor in the animated film “Fishing Hooks” (2010), where she voiced Shelsey as well as many supporting and guest characters. She voiced tigress in the television adaptation of “Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness”, which ran for 4 seasons beginning in 2011. In 2012, she had the lead role of Ellie Underhill in the action film “Kaijudo”, which consisted of 52 episodes. In the same year, the actress received roles in other cartoons: “Gravity Falls”, “Randy Cunningham: 9th Grade Ninja”, and “Winx Club”. She voiced Meg, the main object of falling in love in Disney’s short “Wallet”, which screened in theaters before the film “Sunken Ralph” in 2012. The recording for this film was only 30 minutes long and consisted of almost one vocal sounds. However, “Wallet” won an Academy Award as Best Animated Short Film.
In 2015, Walgren was part of the cast of Fairy OddParents, which featured lead character Chloe Carmichael in the show’s 10th season. In the third season, “Rick and Morty” voiced Jessica and other characters. She voiced Amanda in the TV series “Bunzen the Beast” directed by Batch Hartman, which aired on “Nickelodeon” in February 2017. In July 2017 she voiced Dorothy Gale in the animated series “Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz”, which aired on “Boomerang”.
Many of Walgren’s works have received awards and awards from websites specializing in anime and animation. At the annual Anime Dubbles Awards in 2008, Kari was named best actress.
The Voices Behind the Characters website chose Walgren as “Voice Actress of the Year” in 2012. She was also nominated for this award in 2011 and 2013. She was also nominated for Best Vocal Performer for Anime in 2011 and in 2013, Best Vocalist in a Television Series in 2012 and in 2013.