Kousei Arima (CV: Natsuki Hanae) used to play the piano, but after his mother died he lost the ability to hear himself play and he stopped. One day he is asked to go as Friend A with his friends Tsubaki Sawabe (CV: Ayane Sakura) and Ryouta Watari (CV: Ryouta Oosaka) and the fellow classmate of Tsubaki and young violinist Kaori Miyazono (CV: Risa Taneda). The young violinist start to violently and forcefully changing Kousei’s life after their meeting, and little by little Kousei is forced to deal with all his past demons and the ghost of his mother.
This is a story by Naoshi Arakawa that really wants to tell you something and the original comic is well made although I saw a few issues in the art once in a while. The pacing was messed up in the anime as they too religiously followed the original work, but it doesn’t change the beauty of this work. The story ends in my favourite way – bittersweet – and the general theme here is classical music. A question it rises for a fellow classical musician, as myself, is “Should you play as you wish, or follow the score to every point?” Another question that would go for everyone is “Are you ever ready to give up?”
At the very first time we see Kaori, we see her playing a pianica in tears. The significance of these tears can be understood later. She’s sad she losing her ability to play. That’s how I see them and I very quickly understood what was behind her actions. I also, very much so, has an understanding for Kaori and her actions. I myself has slowly and painfully lost the ability to play the instrument I play. It rips your soul and crushes your heart to go through and despite wanting to play you might not be able no matter how you try. Kaori, who was not only losing her ability to play the violin, but also her life, couldn’t see the one she loved stop playing, especially when she knew that inside his heart all he wanted to do was play. Kousei, much like Kaori, also clings to the instrument of his. It’s a part of himself and even after the tragic passing of his mother, he can’t remove that part, even though he doesn’t want to play anymore and is scared of playing.
It’s a really beautiful story about two youths dealing with life being at its cruelest and doing the absolute best they can of it. They make music. They try to live their life to the fullest. Kaori tries to find was to stand against her illness and continue play. And… They fall in love.
Once again, it’s a beautiful show. Understandably, Kaori can be annoying, but she just tries her hardest. The last thing she really wanted was to hurt Kousei and that’s why she pretends her love is Ryouta, even if Ryouta eventually understands the one she wants is Kousei. I really recommend this title, especially as the original work. The beautiful music of the show however does weight up the off pacing in the anime, so it’s worth giving it a go.
This title will always have a special place in my heart. Always. And it’s not entirely because I can relate so well to it, but because it has Arakawa Naoshi to tell and is really moving.
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