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Hino Kahoko is a sophomore at a high school which caters to both general students, and the musically elite. On the first day of class, Hino meets a fairy named Lili and is entrusted with a magical violin; this violin has the ability to express the music in someone’s heart, even if they do not possess the talent for playing the instrument. With the violin in her care, Hino must now compete in a musical competition, but the guilt of not having true musical talent consumes her. Lili’s dream is to bring happiness to people with music, but Hino isn’t sure she has what it takes to be the one to do it. Can Hino perservere, or will she abandon Lili’s dream?
In both animes, there is a strong love for the music they make and play. In La Corda there is a focus on classical music and Sakamichi focuses on jazz, but they both depict music the same way. They both have plenty of romance and drama in them too. If you liked one, you'd like the other.
Ohana Matsumae is a sixteen-year-old girl with no purpose or direction in life. One day, however, she gets the chance to reinvent herself when her mother and her boyfriend do a moonlight flit to escape his debts. Left alone, Ohana goes to live with her estranged grandmother, but when she arrives she finds herself forced to work at the family’s hot spring resort, the Kissuiso Inn. With her grandmother considering her nothing more than an employee and a roommate who hates her, Ohana’s happy dream of a new life soon turns into a nightmare. Now the wide-eyed girl must learn the value of hard work as she attempts to make friends and familiarise herself with life at the resort.
Both animes are slife of life dramas about a high schooler who is suddenly in an environment they aren't familiar with and surrounded by relatives who don't seem to like them very much. Both main characters are dealing with having absent parents and both deal with it by throwing themselves into a new hobby or career. Iroha is slightly more comedic, but they both have melodramatic tones and focus on love and romance getting complicated.
Mei Tachibana has had neither a friend nor a boyfriend in 16 years, and she doesn’t plan on ending that streak any time soon. The outcast learned years ago that social obligations only lead to pain, and has carefully guarded her heart to keep from getting hurt. However, the girl can’t stay withdrawn forever, especially after attracting the attention of the handsome Yamato, who finds her caustic personality interesting and strives to date her after she roundhouse kicks him down the stairs. But even the most earnest of romances can be crippled by jealousy and insecurity, and this pair has plenty of both. Can their feelings for each other overcome their own emotional weaknesses, or will this love perish before it even begins?
Miu is a young, talented pianist with a passion for playing music. Under the guidance of Shirakawa, her teacher, she decides to enter a recital, where she will play an emotional, self-written piece.
The studious and uptight Chiaki is well-known as the top pianist of his school, and dreams of becoming a world-class conductor like his idol, Viera; but his fear of flying (which makes studying abroad impossible) combined with a recent break-up and dismissal from his piano instructor causes that future to seem both bleak and unlikely. After collapsing outside of his apartment, drunk, Chiaki inadvertently meets a young woman named Nodame who, while quite talented at the piano, is unclean, clumsy, and haphazard. Despite being almost polar opposites, the two begin to grow closer and work, together, to overcome the obstacles in their careers.