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Title: Fujimi Orchestra (Fujimi Block No. 2 Symphony Orchestra)
Genre: Drama / Shonen Ai
Credits: Akizuki Koh, Sony Records, June Magazine, AIC

Skysenshi's Description: Fujimi Block No. 2 Symphony Orchestra is composed of amateur musicians led by the shy, bespectacled Yuki Morimura. They didn't have much to offer in terms of musical ability, but the arrival of the brilliant conductor Kei Tounoin brings a newfound sparkle in everybody's eyes. Kei is night to Yuki's day. While Yuki leads with warmth and gentleness, Kei rules with a dictator's hand. Despite this stark difference, Fujimi Orchestra blossoms more under Kei's care. When all the young women, including Yuki's love interest Kawashima, starts expressing romantic interests in Kei, Yuki turns bitter. His performance plummets, forcing an inevitable confrontation with the enigmatic Kei. Yuki quits. Kei wouldn't allow it…for Yuki is the "violin" that Kei had been longing for since the very beginning.

HN Opinions
Average Rating:

skysenshi (10.03.2002)
Soap-operatic anime like this…
…should be serialized into a full-blown anime TV drama. It boasts of beautiful classical music (some of which are by Wagner) that effectively set the mood as chains of events unfold. The artwork and animation are as elegant as the sounds, with characters' faces that are delicately "sculpted" and eyes that are so heavy-lidded they can only be deliciously expressive. The steamy sexual encounters make for mouthwatering eye candy, with just enough heat in there that doesn't come off as vulgar.

The plot has a lot of potential, though it only focuses on one aspect: the yaoi factor. Even then, the tangled web of emotions is so conscientiously done that one can only look at this title with a sense of longing. For what, I can't really identify.

The sequence of events isn't arranged chronologically. Fujimi Orchestra begins with the end, passes through a series of flashbacks, trips to the present, and ends with the beginning. What's more essential here is the flow of the story. It starts off with Yuki brooding in deep thoughts, causing him to lose his concentration during a rehearsal. Kei calls his attention and Yuki ultimately blames Kei for his lack of inspiration.

For a moment I find myself laughing as irony after irony play themselves out. Yuki is in love with Kawashima but Kawashima nurses a tendré for Kei, who, in turn, has the hots for Yuki. When Kawashima confesses her feelings to Kei, Kei thinks that Kawashima is Yuki's girlfriend and uses this excuse to reject her. Kawashima promptly informs him that in the three years that they've been together, Yuki has never made any move on Kawashima, making her think that he is gay. Kei takes her word for it. The moment Yuki announces that he wants to quit because of how Kei runs the Orchestra, Kei takes his violin and forces Yuki to come with him to his apartment. There, he forces himself on the young violinist.

Things become painful at this point, seeing as Yuki has never had sexual congress with another man before. Though I adore yaoi themes, I can't help but feel sorry for the broken hearted uke. It's bad enough that the girl he had desperately wanted to marry didn't think anything of him. That this same girl indirectly pushes him into the arms of the man he despised is insult added to injury.

The air becomes heavy with thespian complications. Characters are filled with remorse for mistakes that have been committed and they are left to deal with the consequences as they try to move forward.

Fujimi Orchestra's ends in a slightly happy note, as the central figures once again prioritize music above all else. However, the feeling of incompleteness just cannot be shaken. There are so many things left unsaid, with so many possibilities laid out, begging for further development. There isn't any definite resolution, like an open-ended question left unanswered.

Skysenshi's NOTE: The novel has 20+ volumes of noteworthy little pieces depicting the lives of the Fujimi musicians and the orchestra's rise from the ranks of simplistic amateurs. Fujimi Orchestra's print version has also sparked the interest of fans other than female shonen-ai lovers. This opinion is based solely on the anime. Classical music rocks!

Art/Animation: 9 Story/Plot: 8 Characters: 8 Sounds: 10 Ecchi Level: 5