Tonio is an English VOCALOID developed and distributed by Zero-G Limited, and was released in July 2010 for the VOCALOID2 engine. Tonio is advertised as a "virtual vocalist modelled on the voice of professional male classical singer"; his voice provider has never been revealed.
While it is unknown why Zero-G choose this name, "Tonio" is one of several name variants which are derived from the name "Antonius" (the modern version being "Antonio"), which is taken from the old Greek word "anthos" meaning "flower". It is considered an alternative variation to the name "Tony" (which is also derived from the same origin). It is used as a Spanish, Italian and English name for boys.
His stock photo is of young man in a tuxedo named Stanislav Jakuschevskij, a Russian model, and is meant to portray a young opera singer. However, this is not meant to be his official character, much the same as other past Zero-G VOCALOIDs (the sole exceptions being SONiKA and AVANNA). An example of the original is here, titled "Portrait of Young Man Wearing Tuxedo, Black and White" File #7060644, submitted by Alija.
Tonio's Taiwan design is a reference to the monster/oni in Asian opera house stories.
The Martini is his proposed character item (because Prima's was said to be wine). SONiKA later twittered about Tonio being unable to go swimming on their vacation since he was suspicious of any liquid not at least partly Martini based. Notably, Tonio's item is the only established item that has been confirmed of any Zero-G VOCALOID.
Music featuring TonioEdit
- Tonio is featured in 30 songs and 7 albums on this wiki.
- There are listings for notable, original, and cover songs.
Examples of usage
|Once Before the Fall|
|Snow-White and Black-Ashes|
When he was first mentioned by Zero-G, they noted that they were planning to redesign their older VOCALOIDs, but neither he nor Prima would be getting a new look as Zero-G felt they were satisfied with their appearance. This is because Tonio is one of their professionally aimed Voicebanks, so the boxart and voicebank is not aimed at the general VOCALOID fandom.
His boxart is from a stock image. The photographer was Alija who has submitted her work to various stock photo websites. An example of the original is here titled "Portrait of Young Man Wearing Tuxedo, Black and White" File#: 7060644, there are other images based on the model. The model featured in the photo is Stanislav Jakuschevski.
- Since he follows Big-Al, who also had a late release, a joke within the fandom notes how the male English VOCALOID always seem to be late arriving ("suffering from BIG AL syndrome"). Even within the Japanese fandom, jokes are made about Tonio and SONiKA being nearly obscure due to their bad timing, the former being more obvious.
- A little bit of his personality has been revealed from time to time via SONiKA's Twitter. According to SONiKA, when Prima, Tonio and herself went camping, Tonio spent the whole time complaining. The lack of Martinis were his biggest source of ire.
- Just as Prima is referred to by SONiKA as "Auntie Prima", SONiKA referred to Tonio as "Uncle Tonio", but also confirmed the two are not married and this was just a term SONiKA referred to them as.
|Tonio's character status|
Despite his lesser fan use, in 2010 Crypton Future Media produced a ranking of the VOCALOIDs they sold on their website. Tonio was ranked the 10th most popular VOCALOID they sold, and in the process the third most popular of the imported VOCALOIDs that Crypton sold.
In the the 2011 top Zero-G products ranking released in 2011, Tonio was the only one of the 3 VOCALOID2 voicebanks from Zero-G that was not in their top 25 rankings. In 2012, sales picked up and he was in 21st place.
He was absent from the rankings for 2013, but returned to take the no.31 spot in 2014.
He did not receive the same impact as Prima did and to top it off, his release came at an awkward time when focus was on the new stream of Japanese VOCALOIDs (like Lily). Ironically, had he come out when he was first proposed (early 2010), he would have had no competition from any other VOCALOID, likely receiving more focus. In regards to other English vocals, Big Al was noted to have received a much stronger focus, since Big Al had more 'personality' to his vocal despite Tonio having a 'beautiful' voice.
In both the Western and Japanese fandom he is among the least seen in use of the English capable VOCALOIDs on Nico Nico Douga and Youtube. He is overall ranked as the least seen VOCALOID2 voicebank.
An independent search on Nico Nico Douga revealed that most VOCALOIDs had less than 1,000 videos uploaded to Nico Nico Douga in 2011 between July 1st and December 15th. Tonio fell into this category.
In 2015 a survey was made based on the popularity of Vocaloids on website Nico Video. For the year 2014, Tonio was the 43rd most popular Vocaloid and the 5th most popular "Engloid".