Jul. 6 is Piano Day.

It is being told that, on the same day in 1823, a German physician named Philipp Franz von Siebold, who was affiliated with the Dutch Trading Post, introduced the piano to Japan for the first time. The piano, which was rare at the time, is now a familiar instrument. Many people may have learned to play the piano when they were children.

The piano is so familiar to people that it often appears in anime as well. Many characters have charmed fans with their beautiful performances so far. Among them, who is considered to be the most impressive character?

Here at Anime!Anime! we conducted an annual reader survey asking “Who is your favorite pianist in the anime?”. During the survey period between Jun. 23 to Jun. 30, a total of 162 responses were received.
There were more female respondents with the gender ratio being 25% male and 75% female. The age group was about 60% for those under the age of 19, and about 25% for those in their 20s, mainly focusing on youngsters.

■Talented pianists are at the top of the list!
The 1st place goes to Arima Kousei from “Your Lie in April” with a support rating of 15%, resulting to be on top for three consecutive years.

Many readers praised the adolescent story with a pianist as the protagonist; “I love the story itself with the protagonist who has lost the ability to hear the sound of his piano and then, after the encounter with a girl, he starts growing both as a musician and a human being”, and “He is able to instantly draw his rivals'rivals and the audience's attention. I'm also particularly impressed with how he and the heroine help each other to solve their mental weaknesses”.
Some of the fans were touched by a famous song, “The scene where he plays Rachmaninoff's 'Love's Sorrow' is very memorable. I get goosebumps no matter how many times I watch it”.

The 2nd place goes to Noda Megumi from “Nodame Cantabile” with an approval rating of about 10%, resulting to be on 2nd place for two years in a row.

Her cheerful personality attracted a lot of fans; “When it comes to piano, Nodame comes first! In the beginning, she was composing music and seemed to be immature, but after meeting many people, including Chiaki, I was very moved by the way she was growing up. I'm also learning the piano, so when I see Nodame's great performances, it makes me want to play it”, and “The sight of her playing many songs is impressive. There are also many other attractive points besides the piano, such as her love affair with Chiaki”.

The 3rd place goes to Nagisa Kaworu from “Rebuild of Evangelion”, ranking up from the 6th place of last year.

Kaworu's four-handed performance in the third film of the tetralogy, “Evangelion: 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo.” was well received by the audience; “I was most impressed with the four-handed scene with Shinji. With his translucent white skin, beautiful red eyes, and Ishida Akira's voice, he's a great character who becomes perfect with his ability to play the piano”, and “It's a short scene, but it has a strong impact. He is an inseparable character from the piano”.
The reason for the high position in the ranking is probably because of the upcoming release of the latest film.

■Let's introduce other comments!
Hijirikawa Masato from “Uta no Prince-sama!”, “Since his specialty is the piano, and as he has played many times in the series, Hijirikawa is the first character that comes up to my mind”.
Nishikino Maki from “Love Live!”, “I loved the scene where she sings 'Aishiteru Banzai!' while playing the piano in the music room”.

Nicol Amalfi from “Mobile Suit Gundam SEED”, “An elite soldier and a pianist at the same time, which is amazing. I love how her meek and gentle nature comes through in her piano performance”.
Some votes were also received for characters of the latest works broadcast in 2020, such Alan Stuart from “My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!”; “The song he played with Geordo was so beautiful!”.

The top-ranking of this survey features not only works that are notable for their music themes, like “Your Lie in April”, but also mecha anime and series depicting school daily lives, such as “Evangelion” and “Assassination Classroom”. Nationally famous anime characters, such as Shizuka-chan in “Doraemon” and Brook in “One Piece”, are also in the top 20 list.

■Top 20
“Who is your favorite pianist in the anime? 2020 Ver. ”
1. Arima Kousei “Your Lie in April”
2. Noda Megumi “Nodame Cantabile”
3. Nagisa Kaworu “Rebuild of Evangelion”
4. Nishikino Maki “Love Live!”
5. Ichinose Kai “Forest of Piano”
5. Hijirikawa Masato “Uta no Prince-sama!”
7. Irina Jelavić “Assassination Classroom”
8. Alan Stuart “My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!”
8. Sakurauchi Riko “Love Live! Sunshine!!”
10. Sakuma Ritsu “Ensemble Stars!”
11. Shirokane Rinko “BanG Dream!”
11. Suou Tamaki “Ouran High School Host Club”
11. Minamoto Shizuka “Doraemon”
11. Li Xiaolang “Cardcaptor Sakura”
15. Ashikiba Takuto “Yowamushi Pedal”
15. Tsuchiura Ryoutarou “La Corda d'Oro: Primo Passo”
15. Nanami Haruka “Uta no Prince-sama!”
15. Nicol Amalfi “Mobile Suit Gundam SEED”
15. Brook “One Piece”
15. Mouri Ran “Detective Conan”

(Response period: Jun. 23 – Jun. 30, 2020)