[[quoteright:332:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/nodame_cantabile.jpg]]
An anime, manga, and live-action TV series centered around the two protagonists, Shinichi Chiaki and Megumi Noda (more commonly referred to by the whole cast as Nodame). The show begins at Momogaoka College of Music where both protagonists attend. Chiaki is a talented violinist and pianist, considered one of the top students at the school, who dreams of becoming a conductor. He is extremely handsome and popular, an excellent cook, very neat and ''stuck-up''. Nodame is an extremely talented but wild piano player whose ambition is to become a kindergarten teacher. She is a complete slob, a terrible cook, and generally acts extremely strange. The two first meet when Chiaki is thrown out by his piano teacher after an argument, and winds up being taught under the same teacher as Nodame. They later discover that their apartments are next door to each other.

The show follows the musical careers of both characters as Chiaki eventually decides to follow his dream and pursue conducting. At the same time, the relationship between him and Nodame goes through numerous highs and lows, growing ever stronger in the process. Chiaki eventually assumes control of Orchestra S, assembled by Franz von Stresemann, a conductor-in-residence from abroad.

''NodameCantabile'' is a sweet {{slice of life}} drama, and both the anime and live action drama have strengths. It has some striking similarities with ''HoneyAndClover'', another show produced by J.C. Staff about quirky young people who pursue creative studies at college (art school, in that case). 2 sequel seasons have been released, "Paris Chapters" and "Finale", both of which detail the manga chapters that take place in Europe, mostly Paris, France. The anime in general follows the manga very closely, so much so that the season titled "Finale" isn't really a finale at all because the anime leaves the story open much like the manga did in those parallel chapters. The manga ended in September 2010 with a two-volume sequel collectively known as "Opera-hen", bringing the total volume count to 25.

The show is highlighted by its beautiful performances of classical music, as well as its seamless blending of said music into the creative lives of its characters. [[http://www.crackle.com/c/Nodame_Cantabile Season 1 available in English]] on Crackle.

[[VerbalTic Gyabo!]]
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!!This show provides examples of:
* AllLoveIsUnrequited: [[DoggedNiceGuy Nodame]] likes Chiaki, but so do [[StalkerWithACrush the violinist]] who took Kiyora's place, Chiaki's ex-girlfriend Saiko and timpanist [[CampGay Okuyama]]. Oboe player Yasunori, in turn, has a crush on Nodame.
* AllWorkVsAllPlay: Chiaki is usually seen engaged in his studies, advancing his musical career, while [[SaveOurTeam saving an orchestra or two]] along the way. He's even pondering beauty and meaning of music in his life on his spare time. Nodame is a [[BrilliantButLazy talented but unmotivated music student]], often preoccupied with [[{{Otaku}} her favorite anime]] [[ShowWithinAShow Puri Gorota]] and generally being a CloudCuckoolander. She gets better in Seasons 2 and 3 [[CharacterDevelopment as she finds her motivation to strive for greatness]], with the help [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Chiaki]], her mentors, and her friends at the Conservatoire.
* AlwaysSomeoneBetter: Famed Chinese pianist Rui, a ChildProdigy who joins the cast in seasons 2 and 3.
* AwesomeMusic: With a PublicDomainSoundtrack featuring music from [[LudwigVanBeethoven Beethoven]] to [[MauriceRavel Ravel]], that is performed by the RealLife Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, this trope is a given if you are a fan of classical music. Notable performances include the concerts of the in-universe [[RagTagBunchOfMisfits S-Orchestra/Rising Star Orchestra]] from Season 1, and any pieces played by Chiaki or Nodame ([[BrilliantButLazy when she is properly motivated]]). Also of note is the anime's first OP theme: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ZZAd3BVHV4 'Allegro Cantabile' by SUEMITSU & THE SUEMITH]]; the lyrics of which are about the joys devoting one's life to playing music. The first ED theme: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lZxggflHeRw 'Konna ni Chikaku de...' by Crystal Kay]] is also beautiful. If there were a theme song for the tropes CannotSpitItOut, and AllLoveIsUnrequited, it would be this.
* BeachEpisode: The DVD special. Yes, [[{{Fanservice}} Nodame is wearing a bikini in it]].
** "D-Cup Devil!"
* BeautifulAllAlong: Nodame, when she's not making silly faces or dressing like a slob. Season 2's Yasunori Kuroki develops a crush on Nodame, though she does manage to destroy her image of her because she's Nodame. Also see Chapter 11's cover. Hubba-hubba.
* BetaCouple: Mine and Kiyora.
** [[spoiler: And later Kuroki and Tanya too.]]
* BishieSparkle: Usually for remarking a well performed music (both around the performers and the audience). Played semi-straight around Professor Auclair (perhaps to emphasize his [[CloudCuckooLander different]] way to teach?)
* BlankWhiteEyes: Used pretty frequently, especially for Nodame
* BlueWithShock: Happens a lot to Nodame--and everyone who gets involved with her.
* BookEnds: The first anime season uses these expertly, with the first scene of episode one, a flashback, running alongside a "narration" (words appearing an otherwise blank screen) about memories, and the final scene of the last episode continuing the thought to reflect one of the series' big themes and the development of the characters. Makes an already touching finale so damn-near perfect.
** In the live-drama, the first song that the group together as an orchestra was Beethoven Symphony No. 7, as well as being the first time Chiaki conducted. At the end of the series, they played this song again, being the last time Chiaki would conduct in Japan with this orchestra, since they were all graduating and going their separate ways.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: Most of the maestros featured in the series are like that, such as Stresemann with his pervertedness and Viera with his obsession for toys. Even Nodame's teacher in Paris, Professor Auclair, is pretty quirky too.
* TheCameo: Hige Danshaku in season two during Nodame's recital at a French castle. Hige Danshaku is a manzai duo whose theme is that of a French-born Japanese nobleman (Louis Yamada LIII) and his butler (Higuchi-kun). In the manga, the microbes from Manga/{{Moyashimon}} make an appearance in Nodame's curry!
* TheCapitalOfBrazilIsBuenosAires: When Chiaki goes to [[spoiler:SaoPaulo, in Brazil]], the guy that received him in the airport takes him to the beach. Almost anyone knows that city has no beaches so near.
** Some other related stereotypes are shown, played straight and {{Lampshaded}}.
* CatchPhrase: GYABOOOOOOO~
* ChekhovsGift: The pocket watch Stresemann left with Nodame turns out to be instrumental in helping Chiaki to overcome his phobia of flying.
* ChildProdigy: Season 2's Sun Rui started performing internationally at age 10. Luca is a child also accepted into the same conservatory as Nodame. Of course, neither compares to the real life child prodigy in season 2, Mozart!
** Nodame herself used to be one as a little girl.
* ClingyJealousGirl: Played straight [[PlayedForLaughs for laughs]] most of the time by Nodame, rarely played for drama. In fact there are quite a number of instances where Nodame is reasonable and understanding toward Chiaki's relationships with other people, especially when it involves his musical career.
* CovertPervert: Nodame has shades of this towards Chiaki. Though it’s mostly played for laughs.
** Chiaki surprisingly exhibits some aspects of this too, such as his reaction when he discovered Nodame is actually a HiddenBuxom.
* CloudCuckooLander: Nodame and [[spoiler:Yadovika, the Hungarian composer and Theremin player girl]].
* [[CoolandUnusualPunishment Cool and Unusual Punishment]]: After taking first place during his first conducting competition in France, Chiaki is kidnapped by [[BeleagueredAssistant Elise]], [[LovableSexManiac Franz]] [[TricksterMentor von Stresemann]]'s agent and manager, with the goal of forcing him to sign on with her publicity agency. When he refuses even after being beaten up by one of her bodyguards, she resorts to [[FelonyMisdemeanor tickling him with backscratchers until he submits]].
* CompressedAdaptation: The first series had 23 episodes to cover the first nine volumes of the manga. The next series had 11 episodes to cover the next seven. Yes, people noticed. The third season drops a storyline completely to fit the rest of the material in.
* ConspicuousCG: Close-ups of musical instruments are clearly computer-rendered.
** Same goes for the characters playing those instruments. Sometimes it can make a concert scene look realistic in ways that normal animation just can't pull off, [[UncannyValley but others...]]
* CoversAlwaysLie: Most of the manga covers show Nodame playing instruments she does not play.
* DemotedToExtra: Almost the entire supporting cast of season one less Kuroki the Oboe player don't come back to season 2-3. Some of them return in Finale's episode 0 DVD special as well as a few cameos in the season itself. Justified by the setting change from Japan to Europe.
* DoggedNiceGirl: Guess who...
* {{Dojikko}}: Nodame's clumsiness is often quite over the top.
* ElegantClassicalMusician: Almost every female character.
** And almost all of the guys, too.
* EvenTheGuysWantHim: [[CampGay Okuyama]] > Chiaki < [[DoggedNiceGuy Nodame]]. Nuff said.
* FlamboyantGay: Okuyama Masumi, who is the embodiment of most every stereotype of homosexual males.
* FlowerMotifs: The usual emotional changing of the background to flowers, feathers, or whathaveyou. Do mongooses and fake anime characters count?
* FriendToAllChildren: Nodame has a very easy time making friends with children. Maybe because she can [[OneOfTheKids understand and relate to them very well]].
* FunnyAfro: Okuyama Masumi again.
* GeniusDitz: Nodame, of course. She can even learn French just by listening to it. (It helps that she was watching her favorite anime dubbed in French for several hours.)
* HardDrinkingTropes: Chiaki in seasons 2 and 3, at least relative to the other characters.
* HeyItsThatVoice: Creator/AyakoKawasumi as Nodame, though chances are you won't recognize her until she gets [[{{Kuudere}} really, really angry]]. Then she sounds like [[FateStayNight Saber]]. Conveniently Creator/KateHiggins voices both Nodame and Saber in the respective dubs.
** Interestingly, Chiaki sounds a lot like Gilgamesh from the same due to also being voiced by Creator/TomokazuSeki. In the dub he's voiced by Creator/DougErholtz.
* HiddenBuxom: Nodame usually wears extremely loose fitting shirts and sweaters. That's why it comes as a surprise to Chiaki that she's actually quite well endowed.
* HomageShot: the reference to ''NausicaaOfTheValleyOfTheWind'' in Finale series of the anime, episode 10.
* IWasQuiteALooker: The college director in her younger days. So much so that she could attract both the then upcoming conductor Stresemann and violinist Kai Dunn.
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: In the 1st Season, episodes are numbered "Lesson". In the latter 2 seasons, they are numbered "Leçon" (Lesson on French)
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Chiaki may seem to be an aloof and arrogant JerkAss, but his utter love of music is only matched by the admiration he feels for those who can create and appreciate it. This love of music draws him to Nodame, and helps him to believe in the abilities of the people around him.
* {{Josei}}
* JustFriends / BetterAsFriends: Stresemann and the school's principal decided to be this after the principal had an illness that stopped her from playing the piano when she was younger. Stresemann's assistant Elise mentioned that if not for this illness, the two of them may have become lovers.
* LadykillerInLove: Stresemann, who is a borderline DirtyOldMan, genuinely loved the school's principal when they were younger and decided to remain JustFriends. It's implied his feelings for her had never changed.
* LastMinuteHookup
* LethalChef: Nodame displays all the usual traits, although she can at least manage rice balls. Chiaki, on the other hand, is a SupremeChef.
* LevelScaling: Chiaki's competitions and Nodame's exams. They overcome their challenges in Japan, move to France, and find out everyone in France is ten levels higher.
* LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters: There's a full orchestra to deal with, so naturally, there are a lot of characters.
* LovableSexManiac: Stresemann (almost a DirtyOldMan, indeed)
** Mozart's [[{{OminousLatinChanting}} Requiem Dies Irae]] playing during these scenes does not help.
* ManicPixieDreamGirl: [[CloudCuckooLander Nodame]] to [[StraightMan Chiaki]]. Chiaki takes a while to warm to Nodame, though.
* ManlyTears: Everyone, including [[TheStoic Chiaki and Kiyora]], get a bit teary as they realize this may be their last concert together before they all go their separate ways.
** This is also the response that the music critic in Season 1 gives for one of Chiaki's performances.
* {{Megane}}: Chiaki went undercover and got to wear glasses. Needless to say, he looks [[http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_nCltiUEP0u8/TFOjDA-Da5I/AAAAAAAAANc/10AB5vWPkAM/s1600/Nodame_Cantabile-_The_Final_Score_-_Part_I-06.jpg more]] [[http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc3/hs047.snc3/13445_1523250320096_1199735118_31456358_5970947_n.jpg hotter.]] FetishFuel galore.
* MeddlingParents: Season 2's Rui's mother, even moreso in Season 3.
* MessyHair: Chiaki.
* MisfitMobilizationMoment: The S Orchestra's performance at the school festival.
* MyHovercraftIsFullOfEels: Subverted. As Nodame learns French, she's taught "everyday phrases" that are anything but everyday. Nodame being Nodame, however, is fully aware of the translation of these phrases and is confident that they will be useful.
* NoblewomansLaugh: Chiaki's agent from the second season. Amusingly, in the anime's second season, Nodame adopts this laugh (as well as a new voice) as she passes herself off as Chiaki's wife to the orchestra staff.
* NoExportForYou: Animax Asia produced a (rather good) dub for the series. It can be viewed in the U.S. via online streaming, but its only DVD release was for Region 3 (Hong Kong). [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WJscIwujtQ Here's a sample.]]
* NotWhatItLooksLike: Nodame encounters Saiko and Chiaki in what appears to be a compromising situation at one point. Subverted later when Saiko wants to turn it into exactly what it looks like.
* OccidentalOtaku: Frank.
* OddCouple: Ambitious perfectionist Chiaki with the wild and uncontrollable Nodame.
* {{Ojou}}: Saiko, especially at the beginning.
* OfficialCouple: Not hard to figure out that its Chiaki and Nodame. For starters, they appear together in every anime opening and every credit sequence. And during the course of the show, not one of the [[RomanticFalseLead other suitors that appear]], for either character, pose any serious romantic challenge. Furthermore the main premise and appeal of the show revolves around the evolving relationship between them. OppositesAttract indeed...
* OnlyKnownByTheirNickname: Megumi "Nodame" Noda.
* OppositesAttract: Chiaki and Nodame.
* {{Otaku}}: Nodame is a big fan of [[ShowWithinAShow PuriGorota]].
** Frank, although soon after he admits he's nothing compared to Nodame.
* PaperFanOfDoom: Harisen-sensei is ''named'' after his paper fan, which was instrumental in causing the rift between him and Chiaki. He later gives it up in order to convince Nodame to take lessons from him.
* PastelChalkedFreezeFrame: The anime uses these a lot during concerts.
* PimpedOutDress: Masumi wears one, which he made himself, for the S Orchestra's performance of "Rhapsody in Blue" in Episode 10.
* ProductPlacement: The show is sponsored by Yamaha. Guess what brand ''every'' piano is. Yes, also in France, which is not that surprising, a lot of music-school pianos are Yamahas, even in France.
* RunningGag: Chiaki purchasing canned food whenever something is troubling him.
* [[SaveOurTeam Save Our Orchestra]]: Of the musical variety. Starring Chiaki in his first full-time conducting job with Paris' Roux-Marlet Orchestra. The orchestra itself has [[GloryDays a storied and prestigious 150 year long history]], and was conducted in the past by Chiaki's [[TricksterMentor famous mentor]], [[LovableSexManiac Franz von Stresemann]]. But when Chiaki becomes it's regular conductor, he finds it has fallen on harder times. Its [[ClubStub short on members]], and those who remain are [[HowTheMightyHaveFallen unmotivated and demoralized by a recent streak of lacklustre performances]]. After an absolutely dismal concert with Chiaki conducting, he vows bring the orchestra back to its former glory. He did it before with the S Orchestra in Season 1, and he'll do it again.
* SchoolFestival: Which leads to an absolutely brilliant performance by Nodame and the "S Orchestra".
* ScrewedByTheNetwork: Animax Latinamerica had the first six episodes dubbed in Spanish, but then never really has been followed up, thanks to Network Decay.
** It was completed and finally started airing. Sadly, all anime that is left in the network (now known as Spin and dedicated to live-action series) was moved to a space ridiculously early in the morning.
* SequelEscalation: In the second season, Chiaki and Nodame move to Paris. Yes, it's harder than Tokyo.
* SheIsNotMyGirlfriend: Even when she ''is'', Chiaki still treats Nodame this way. He still has trouble saying it on a whim, but eventually he stops correcting people who refer to her as his girlfriend in the Paris seasons.
* ShoutOut: Live-action, end of third episode: ''[[MobileSuitGundam "SIEG ZEON!!!"]]''. Also, in Nodame Cantabile Paris, the next door neighbor, Franc, is an otaku who collects merchandise of Shakogan no Shana, another JC Staff anime.
* ShowWithinAShow: Type 2 (Nodame is a huge fan of Puri Gorota) and 3 (The very existence of that show made a difference).
* ShyFingerTwiddling: Done by Nodame when she asks Chiaki out.
* SingleIssuePsychology: Chiaki had a bad experience on a plane as a kid and developed a crushing fear of non-land based travel as a result. It only takes one hypnotherapy session with Nodame and he's cured.
** Well, she just makes him completely forget the incident, instead of curing the fear. We see afterwards that he's still comically afraid of non-land based travel, it's just that he can take it when there aren't any other options.
* SleepCute: From the live-action drama, Nodame finds Chiaki asleep. Then [[DudeShesLikeInAComa sneaks a kiss]] on his cheek. Then again, he looks like [[http://img478.imageshack.us/img478/8392/0434st0.jpg this.]] Can't really blame Nodame.
* SliceOfLife
* StalkingIsFunnyIfItIsFemaleAfterMale: Nodame, of course. And, yes, in season two we find she ''does'' have those sort of photos of Chiaki and she does want to do ''that'' with Chiaki. You don't want to know how many times she ''sniffs'' him.
* SupremeChef: Chiaki.
* TallDarkAndSnarky: Chiaki embodies this.
* TenMinuteRetirement: There are several instances where Nodame loses focus and seriously considers quitting piano lessons. Sometimes she recovers herself, sometimes Chiaki needs to help her regain her focus.
* ThirdPersonPerson: Nodame, this is among her quirky idiosyncrasies.
* ThisAndThat: When Stresemann first meets Nodame, he attempts to seduce her, and refers to this when going to a love hotel. Nodame is oblivious as to his meaning, but Chiaki, still within earshot, gets it and steps in to intervene.
* [[ThroughHisStomach Through Her Stomach]]: Little does Chiaki realize what he gets himself into once he starts feeding Nodame.
* TranslationConvention: Kai Dunn of the Berlin Philharmonic arrives in one episode, but has only a limited grasp of Japanese. While the episode renders everything in Japanese, handy notes appear whenever the characters are in fact speaking German. And, of course, the second season takes place in France, so all the characters in France, including Russians and Chinese, are speaking perfect Japanese in a fansub with English subtitles.
* TrashOfTheTitans: Nodame's apartment. Chiaki just can't resist cleaning it up.
* TricksterMentor: Stresemann to Chiaki.
* {{Tsundere}}: Chiaki is very much this toward Nodame, leaning very toward the ''tsuntsun'' (cranky) end, but with frequent, if short-lived, affectionate and sweet moments towards her.
* UnsoundEffect: Not exactly a sound effect, but, in the manga, you can't hear the actual music. The manga simply states the name of the song being played -- and if you aren't familiar with the song, you're stuck with just the pretty pictures. Another UnsoundEffect is Nodame's badger, whose presence is seen in Nodame's emotional outbursts.
* UptightLovesWild: Chiaki to Nodame.
* VerbalTic: Nodame often uses nonsense exclamations like "Gyabo!" and "Mukya!"
* WhenSheSmiles:
** In the live-drama, Kiyora was already pretty. But you can see how when she changes from [[http://pics.livejournal.com/tsukisagi/pic/0007bceh/s640x480 this]] to [[http://img174.imageshack.us/img174/6272/nodame0417lghm6.jpg this]], she's absolutely ''glowing''.
** Chiaki himself, also in the live-drama. He usually reserves his smiles. But when he generally pleased or happy, though they are small, he [[http://img135.imageshack.us/img135/4589/1192gy3ga7.jpg doesn't]] [[http://www.flickr.com/photos/34599287@N05/3216726181 resist]] [[http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_DoKvecRWiI8/RtO2mnnm_gI/AAAAAAAAABU/cLhLaJbbst4/s1600-h/nodame.jpg them.]]
* WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue
* WillTheyOrWontThey: Nodame and Chiaki. In the first season of the anime they seem to get together in the end. For the second season this apparently has been reset, since the issue has still not been resolved in the manga it is based on.
* WorthyOpponent: Despite displaying some traits of a musical ArrogantKungFuGuy, french conductor Jean Donnadieu is this during Chiaki's first conducting competition in France. Its actually his girlfriend Yuuko who does most of the [[TrashTalk trash talking]], much to his chagrin.
* {{Yandere}}:
** Nodame's a relatively mild case; in the Paris Chapter, when Chiaki wanted to break up with her, [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome she beat the crap out of him (on a bridge overlooking the Seine!) until he changed his mind]]. At least she didn't bring out any [[AxCrazy sharp implements]]...
** During the fight, Nodame also makes a valid point--every time she thinks they're getting closer, Chiaki pulls away from her. Chiaki knows she's right, and it's implied that it helps cause him to relent just as much as him wanting the pain to stop does.
** This one is PlayedForLaughs, but still counts: in the first season, when they try to cure Chiaki with hypnosis, Nodame also tries to hypnotize him...into being her boyfriend. It fails.
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