This is it, the moment we’ve all been waiting for: Kai finally takes the stage! It’s been a long road to this moment full of many ups and downs along the way, but now it’s time for Kai to really shine! This is such an emotional episode and I will fully admit that it brought me to tears. I’m still recovering from this phenomenal episode, so without further ado, let’s dive right into Episode 12 of Piano no Mori.
Japanese Original Episode Title: ｆｆｆ(フォルティッシッシモ)
It’s the last day of the first round of the Chopin Competition and after listening to several phenomenal pianists from all across the globe, it is finally time for Kai to take to the stage.
Montage: During Kai’s performance, we are treated to several scenes from Kai’s past, namely those directly linked to his desire to play the piano. While many of the scenes shown are just callbacks from previous episodes, there were quite a few new ones that fans of the manga series will recognize.
Opening Theme: The opening theme song for the series is called ‘Umi e’ which in and of itself is a composition adapted from Chopin’s ‘Étude Op.10, No.1’, which is one of the pieces Kai plays during the First Stage of the Chopin Competition.
Kai’s piano: Okay, so the music in this series has been phenomenal from the beginning, but, somehow all of the piano-playing in this week’s episode just felt much more powerful than usual. Like the other pianists before him, Kai infuses a bit of himself into the music, particularly his feelings about the Forest Piano and the hardships he faced growing up on the forest’s edge.
Themes & Trivia
FFF: Is a musical dynamic that stands for forte fortissimo or fortississimo, which roughly translates to very, very loud or as loud as possible.
Now Playing: There were quite a few of Chopin’s musical pieces played in this week’s episode:
- Etude Op. 10, No. 1: Kai’s first piece during the First Stage of the Chopin Competition. This etude was composed in 1830 and is known for its technical difficulty.
- Waltz Op.64 No. 1: Also known as the ‘Minute Waltz’ this was the piece Kai most wanted to play during the Junior Piano Solo competition, but, was unable to play due to not advancing to the next round.
Every so often you come across a series that manages to just speak to your very soul. It just comes out of nowhere and just sweeps you off your feet and this season that anime was without a doubt Piano no Mori. Week after week I was floored, not just by the phenomenal music, but, by the richness of the storytelling and the characters. To say I merely fell in love with the series is, in fact, a gross understatement. Instead, I find myself captivated by Piano no Mori in a way I have not been by an anime series in a very long time. Though this is merely a midpoint of the series, there was a finality to this week’s episode that not only served as a point of reflection for the series as a whole but also as a turning point in Kai’s journey thus far. This was what the series has been building up to; Kai in Warsaw at the Chopin Competition. Everything has led up to this moment and as Kai stepped out onto the stage you felt the weight of it all. And then he started playing and I literally started crying, I don’t usually admit to crying about an anime, but watching Kai play on that stage, after everything he has been through… it was simply breathtaking!
The Forest Piano
This week’s episode blew me away! There are no words for just how satisfyingly beautiful this episode was to watch and honestly, even if I did, they’d probably be inadequate at best. fff (Forutisshisshimo) is a testament to the very heart and soul of this series, that will tug at the heartstrings and make even the most curmudgeonly viewer feel something (and if you don’t, then, you’re inhuman). Alas, this is the end of Kai’s journey until the second cour picks up in January 2019… but, while I await the series’s return you can bet I will be reading the manga and rewatching episodes in hopes of reliving the magic of Piano no Mori.
NEXT TIME: Winter 2019!
Piano no Mori (The Piano Forest)
Spring 2018 | Anime Info | Simulcast