Nodame Cantabile is a new anime (2007-2008) I have been watching for the last couple of weeks. Today I finished watching this anime and here is what I can tell you about it.
The anime closely follows the original manga by Tomoko Ninomiya. It is about two aspiring classical musicians and their journey to becoming famous (or at least get to play in as many places as possible).
Chiaki Shin’ichi was raised in a family of musicians. He is an extremely good piano and violin player with perfect musical ear. He is the top student at his university and everyone knows him as being extremely arrogant, very handsome and always stealing away the ladies, although unwillingly. His dream is to become an accomplished orchestra conductor but in order to do that he has to overcome his phobia of flying and traveling on water as there is no way to fulfill this dream by staying in Japan.
Megumi Noda, or Nodame being how she prefers to be addressed, is a very talented piano player who surprisingly just wants to become a kindergarten teacher. She has always played music by ear instead of reading the musical score so she has developed a “bad” habit of always “spicing up” the melody in a way largely dependent on her mood. Learning to read the musical score is not the hardest thing for Nodame. It is learning to obey it. She’s also very messy, takes baths several days apart and she always has her room filled with junk food everywhere. She likes to dress up, eat delicious food, play with kids and watch Puri Gorota (a childish, fantasy, animated TV series).
Chiaki meets Megumi and likes her playing on the piano, but she isn’t exactly how he imagined her to be. Nodame instantly proclaims herself Chiaki’s girlfriend, and sometimes wife, while Chiaki tries to deal with the annoyances and help Nodame become more than a kindergarten teacher.
The story becomes very interesting later on when they start facing challenges both musical and personal but what’s most interesting about this anime is how it made me more aware of classical music. It’s no surprise I’m listening to some of it right now. The “live performances” in the anime, although short, are plenty and very beautiful to listen to.
Two seasons have aired so far, Nodame Cantabile and Nodame Cantabile: Paris-Hen, with a third season ready to air this fall.
I kind-heartedly recommend watching (and listening to) this to anyone that loves classical music (or doesn’t hate it). It was very enjoyable for me to watch and it heightened my decision to learn more about music and playing an instrument. Who knows what it would do to you! Just joking. Watch it. You’ll like it! 😀
PS – Have you started yet? Eek! Sorry. ‘^^