“Festival Time”

「ただいまフェスティバル」 (Tadaima Fesutibaru)

Fast Paced Festival:

We certainly shifted gears in this one, storming straight into the Sun Festival with no time to waste. It was odd having an episode as fact-paced as this one after the past four took a much more gradual approach. I wouldn’t say I disliked the fast frames and jump cuts, but I think if we got more of a balance with the pacing, then this episode could have been top-notch. Still, the festival came, and it was worth it, even if it was more about the build-up and the tension of the situation as opposed to the actual performances. Saving budget, or saving the best for later? I don’t know, but SunFes didn’t feel like it was meant to show the band at their best; they’re certainly improving, but I think it’d be too early for a “wow” moment from them. Though, it was rewarding to see the bystanders appreciate their performance – underdog stories are always the best that way.

Taki-sensei certainly has his desired effect on everyone in the band (some more than others), but I think it’s safe to say he’s done a good job so far. Of course, Aoi, who stood up for her own beliefs, isn’t going to stick around when she’s got other commitments, which I liked. I don’t know what else she can offer in the long run, but I do appreciate how she factors into all of this. Natsuki is still a curious one, as well. It seems that she was never suffering from any tragedy that prevented her from playing, as we saw her playing with no problems last week. This time, she commented that they’re already practicing much more than they did last year. It seems like Natsuki’s attitude up until this point has been ‘been there, done that’ and she’d seemingly given up on trying because there wasn’t much point. But now there is, so it’s good to see her coming out of her shell, even if I wish we’d spend more time on her.

A New Start – Afresh, from Scratch:

I’m rattling my brain here, but I think Kumiko may just be the best KyoAni main character. There are plenty of others characters that are more memorable and worth the attention they get, but as for one strong, believable central character, so far Kumiko has the rest beat. I said it in my post for the first episode, but it’s purely because feels real. She doesn’t feel like she’s been crafted in an anime lab to purposefully appeal to the otaku demographic (though I’m sure she does) – she acts like you’d expect a high school student to act: she’s cynical but acts like a goofball around Kousaka, is severely disappointed in her flat chest, and has a nice back-and-forth with Shuuichi, which results in them acting like childhood friends would – a little awkward, quite blunt to one another, and not all about possible love between them. Not only that, but she’s coming full circle with her reasons for choosing her highschool. She accepts her reasons for doing so as valid, and realises that she’s found something really worthwhile out of it.

Kousaka Reina & Romance?:

Much like Kumiko, I’ve got my eye on Kousaka. She borders between comic and serious even when she’s not trying, and her moments with Kumiko are always fun in a one-sided way, but this episode she certainly showed a new side. Straight away it seems like Taki-sensei may have been her reason for moving to the school, since it was brought up that she refused the light-blue demons to join what, on paper, seems like a lesser school. Did she know he would take over the band? And does that tie back to him listening to their middle school performance back in the first episode. Obviously these two aren’t going to have some dangerous affair, but this element of romantic feelings for your teacher (and not just because he’s hot, like everyone else says) could be very interesting to see unfold. Also, is it just me or did Hazuki seem a little glitter-eyed over Shuuichi? That would be a twist, especially since you’d expect Kumiko and Shuuichi to be the ones made for each other (though I think Kumiko x Kousaka is better, personally).

Overview – What’s Next?:

Overall, I thought the festival went by a little too fast. I liked the preparation for it as well as what we did see of the performance, and the nighttime outdoor scene with Kumiko and Kousaka was simply stunning (which explains the multitude of caps I’ve got for an otherwise short scene). Hibike! Euphonium is still delivering the goods – both visually and thematically – so I have no major complaints other than the shift in pacing this time around. I can’t wait to see where Kumiko goes from here, as well as if there is some romance and drama incoming. It can’t be smooth sailing from here out, after all.


  1. I loved in how they mixed the CG with 2D. You see this mix, when the hole Band is marching. Where the Dancers are doing their part, that was CG
    and on the Training Grounds, when they first marched in Sync without Instruments, that also was CG

    This Show has the Fire! The Soul! The Music!!…

    Btw, do someone has an YT Link of some Band Performance of this Song? Its from Yellow Magic Orchestra and old Song, but i am looking for a Street band cover if possible (YT link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r23gU7JzGNc)

    1. All instruments are apparently 3D CG’s, since it’s not realistic to draw that many, various kinds of very complicated-structured objects all by hand. And characters are drawn by hand, naturally.(They are still all 2D CG’s, because everything in anime today ends up with 2D CG’s)
      So yeah the mixture of 2D and 3D is (literally)always there and it’s amazing how natural it looks.
      Heck, just getting 3D modeling of all those instruments are supposed to be incredibly hard. I believe that’s where Yamaha came to help. They provided the data to Nodame production team back in the day.
      Nodame failed somewhat because they had arms and fingers also 3D’ed but KyoAni appears to be smarter than them. Maybe they learned from Nodame.

      1. ALL the instruments?? I think they look like their drawn, with the textural line quality and all. Though I know that in this age, it’s even harder to tell.

      2. Drawing electric guitars by hand is quite hard. Drawing wind instruments is much, much harder, with all those pipes, pistons, keys and switches.
        Imagine tens of them, a lot of kinds of them appear in every episode. That’s not something an anime studio can do, for KtoAni even.

      3. If this were a movie with a blown out budget, they probably would with tons of animators and tweeners and probably fry their digital department. Hey at least though, the shots with lesser subjects are hand drawn. Just the ones with very crowded performance scenes had CGI with clever techniques to blend them as much as possible.

        I agree that they can’t draw all those instruments since TV anime is so restricted. Not even KyoAni’s top of the line scheduling and management would make that possible in a very cost efficient time frame.

        To add to that, if one were to look closely, KyoAni’s consistent animation doesn’t occur all the time throughout the whole season. The unsung heroes that mostly drive and catch their shows are their strong storyboards and layouts. From what I’ve observed, KyoAni’s strength for me is expressing a scene(even with minimal animation) and making the precious animation count.

      4. …….. I gotta rewatch some shots because I GUARANTEE you I remember most of the instrument shots being drawn, even when they move.

        KyoAni doesn’t hold back when it’s close up time. Watch crowded scenes where the camera is further back and characters are considerably smaller like episode 4.

        When KyoAni wills it they can dish out scenes like in Hyouka’s school festival where Mayaka was running through a very crowded hallway. As technically impressive as Hyouka was, it still was using CGI on the sides where it’s cleverly out of focus.

      5. with the Instruments being CG.

        Well, i think i got the gist when the Festival was over and she is holding her Instrument in her Arms. Alone the Colors where strong, i bet they painted the Instrument with the help of CG, or at last the coloring

        the Instrument could be CG and they draw her around it in 2D.

        And we see old school animation skills… When they began to marching, you see 4-5 layers of them going up and down, simulating the footsteps of marching. But in reality they just move the layers a bit up and down and shake left and right, until the legs come into Picture. See, again an nice Trick to our eyes

      6. oh i forgot to add ( i know..)

        With animate their Lips when playing their Instruments, they give us the “illusion” of Human. If they would use the standard procedure they would not animate their Lips, they would probably just animate the cheeks. But here they animate Cheeks and Lips, that give us the Extra touch, if they are real

        As someone wrote here, it is the small things that give us their Soul, that touch us deep

  2. You wrote something about the Backgrounds…

    Well they are modified Real Life Photos

    They use a trick to create the Illusion. They work with the Picture Focus, The 2D Persons are sharp, where the background or surround them gets blurred to play a trick for our Eyes to not see the Valley

    I must say, it can work, and perhaps this art of Background save a bit Budget. Not all needs be drawn handmade, just here and there to fit this Picture into the Anime “Texture” Universe. And i think in the OP the use a Shot of far away to Houses in the distant, also in Fate/Stay UBW.. i mean i saw this Picture there..

    1. The Picture in the OP i mean, is after the Raining. Where you see many Houses, and the Sun is breaking through the Clouds. That is what i mean, playing tricks with us 🙂

  3. Sorry no pandering in this show meaning no yuri whatsoever source material has multiple boy\girl relationships going on and going to happen. Besides this is how real girl friendship would act in high school: being best buds while still liking boys.

    1. I’m sorry but no matter how you slice it, indeed, it looked like pandering, especially if you’re telling the truth about traditional romantic parings. Like: “Well, there will be some romantic developments between boys and girls but before it will happen… here some false yuri hints for you to fap!” Because the scene hasn’t looked like anything between only good friends, especially the anime has tried to tell us they’re not good friends at all, even if MC would want to (well, I even don’t know if she wants to be the good friends or just doesn’t want to feel any awkwardness near her).

  4. https://randomc.net/image/Hibike!%20Euphonium/Hibike!%20Euphonium%20-%2005%20-%20Large%2004.jpg




    I also did like (didn't see mentioned) how there wasn't any sort of overblown drama with SunFes (like one or more characters getting supremely over-melodramatic for one reason or another and requiring an entire episode to be dedicated to getting it all fixed and then doing SunFes all sunshine and rainbows). It was all normal, understandable, and relatable drama with the group getting nervous because of being sandwiched between two much more popular, and well-known concert bands.

    1. Good catch. That does make a great marching band song and I thought the animation for that section was really well done. Just wish there was more of it. I haven’t felt this shortchanged since watching Hanamayata as far as the music and dance goes. I just hope they don’t just give us a snippet of the actual big competition performance.

  5. So many flashbacks to f’ing hot August days, marching and marching and marching until we shook the rust off. The music is important, but in a marching competition, you gotta be able to nail the marching.

    When I heard them talk about 8 steps per 5 meters (yards), I had more flashbacks to 8 to 5s, 4 to 5s (which sucked- 4 steps in 5 yards) and 16 to 5s all came back, along with the worst: high mark time. My HS band used high mark time as a punishment. Worst punishment ever. Just punch me instead. It’ll be over quicker. (Wait, maybe chalking the practice field was worse…)

    If you want to see some really impressive stuff, do a YouTube search for DCI World Championships. Those people are HARDCORE. (Also, do a search for Top Secret Drum Line, because they’re fun to watch and also really entertaining, too!)

    Really enjoying the show now.

    1. Indeed, marching band practice is no joke, especially for field shows. I learned how to play mallets just so I could join the pit / front ensemble for marching season.

  6. I think we will find out why Kousaka came to this school that had such a bad reputation – when she could have come to one of the two schools with a great rep – next week.

    I speculate that
    Show Spoiler ▼

    1. Is that true?

      I’m just guessing he’s some hero trumpet player that caught Kousaka’s eyes now. Seems like Kousaka has a abnormal fascination for the guy.

      1. Or could she know him directly. From a distant relative or private lessons maybe?
        That would explain why he casually asked her about the club practice time in the third show.

        Anyway, it shall be fun to find out

  7. i think one of the best character defining moments of this ep is when kousaka stays silent during Kumiko’s chit chatter until she actually says something that is within her character. It’s like the whole time kousaka was listening to kumiko babble she was like “mmhmm, i dont care about all this superficial stuff you keep talking about; how bout you say something that actually sounds like something you’d say”. Then when kumiko actually says something in character, kousaka cannot help but smile, because that’s what she expects of kumiko. The scene is very telling because it sort of implies that kousaka never held a grudge against kumiko for what she said in middle school. It’s just that as cynical as kumiko is, she’s actually very self-conscious of everything she does and that is enough for her to believe that she is significant enough and important enough for kousaka to be so upset at. Most likely Kousaka was never upset at kumiko, but rather the words she said that day made her realize how much more she needed to improve as a person. This scene shows that kousaka actually appreciates how kumiko can say what’s on her mind (o at least blurts out whats on her mind)

  8. I have immense respect for any marching band musician. I can’t even fathom doing all that correctly.

    Oh those marching students are CGI in far away shots.

    Lemme guess. She falls asleep on the train and misses her stop. … oop nope! She accidentally mentions that awkward moment instead!! … but Reina’s not mad. 😀 This scene was so well shot, timed, and colored!! Such a perfect, tense scene.

    I wonder what the rest of the show will be of. This whole episode has finale feels, but we’re only at Episode 5!

  9. Strangely enough, I found the actual marching band competition being built up to be the weakest part of the episode. It came of as rather silly especially when the band start having a panic attack. We never actually see how amazing Rikka High school is just a few clips of their march and band number. Not to mention Kitauji stand out the most by having the most colorful marching uniforms. Come on KyoAni, Show Don’t Tell is supposed to be your forte!

    The best parts of course come from the training largely because we get to know the characters more. Just the little things, like how Asuka never wanting to lead, or how Aoi is still not really commting to the band. Also, Natsuki is actually talking to her bandmates which is quite a change.

    It’s also nice to see Kumiko finally able to strike a conversation with Reina. Other than the band, this is probably the most important subplot that and we get to see how Kumiko grow more confident when hanging around her.

    1. Yeah, and the the anxiety felt contrived. They skipped too many steps. I wasn’t even aware SunFes was a marching band festival until this ep. It’s nothing short of astonishing that they are able to play so well while walking, and only after they took their first practice session 1 week prior.

      I was in a marching band for 7 years during my youth and it takes time to get used to moving and playing. Especially the fact that you need to concentrate on the music and march within your ranks. Seems like these people in Kitauji are superior in spacial awareness, because they were able to march with nobody making a mistake causing the band to look like a bundled mess. Nobody told me they were pros!

      Just 1 week…

      1. Uuuuuh… I don’t think the time skip took only one week of anime time…

        IIRC, they have 6-7 weeks to practice for the SunFes when Sensei finally agreed to teach them.

      2. They just marched straight forward and turn left and right, only the “Dancers” in front, with no Instruments, need to do complicate steps. They used the Marching speed as Metronome for all of them, beside of the Bass Instruments

        You can hear, that their Cover Version of the Music is a bit down, to match the “beat” of Walking

        if there would be an Audio CD, just with these Band Music parts (of course in full length) i would buy it

  10. I almost started crying when Kitauji started their piece. And I have no idea why. Something tugged at my heartstrings.

    “Music is not something you play to show off to others.” The bigger half of Asia must disagree with this. Throughout history, the ability to play a Western instrument was an immediate way to distinguish your class and education level from others.

    Petit Orenji
  11. Obviously, there has to be a history between Kousaka and Taki-sensei. Family? Music Tutor? They made it clear that there’s something based on her not going to Rika.

    Don’t agree she’s Kyoani’s best MC (that goes to Hyouka’s Houtaro IMO). Mostly it’s due to the way she’s so flustered about connecting with Kousaka. Why? There’s no motive that they’ve shown us for why she insists on trying to befriend her when she already has two good friends. Only explanation is yuri but that doesn’t feel like it’s the reason.

  12. Somehow got reminded of Homura with that hair-flip XD. Nice save with trumpet there Kousaka. When they start panicking, I thought that it would be the right time for someone to cheer them up by playing something and lo, Kousaka did exactly that. 😀

    Reina Kousaka, Most Fabulous Hair of this season.

  13. re: Natsuki, I think that she may have been referring to herself with her comments about people not particularly loving the things that they’re good it. I’ve no explanation for why, it’s just a gut feeling.

    I didn’t mind the faster pacing in this episode, but it is a pity that we didn’t get to see more of the festival. Nevertheless, it’s great to see this series’ musical repertoire expanding!

  14. https://randomc.net/image/Hibike!%20Euphonium/Hibike!%20Euphonium%20-%2005%20-%20Large%2025.jpg

    Dang. This scene was dangerous.

    As expected of a Kigami episode. The characters were really lively. Even though there were quite a lot of CGIs in the march but I guess I’ll give them a break since this scene is quite hard to do. They’ve already done quite well with the instruments already that I’d be a spoiled bastard to ask for more.

    Oh well, Reina is starting to integrate with the folks, I love her screentime this episode. Can’t wait for next week.

  15. C’mon, Kousaka. Get those elbows out. Maybe it’s because you have bad (or maybe good to some people :P) posture…

    Ah, I miss marching band. Not so much parade marching though. We never really did much of that anyway.

  16. On the Training Field. You see a Scene, where they play their Instruments wrapped in a towel. Is that the Training to play the music “blind” to not lose focus of Marching? Or what that more a protection against the Sun for the Instruments?

  17. This episode did well in establishing that Katauji is the dark horse for the upcoming tournament.

    Though I thought Kitauji’s uniform was the best looking one among all the schools that participated. The one with the coat looks stiff and the sky blue one is so plain.

    You have to do better than that KyoAni. AS fragb85 said, Show, not tell, just like what you did with Kousaka’s smile.

    Really love Kousaka’s dashing smile. She didn’t even need to say anything, that one smile of her already told a lot about her character.

  18. As well as the night-time scene with Kumiko, my favourite Reina moment of the episode was when they were waiting to perform at SunFes and everyone was so nervous and she just blared on her trumpet with no regard to anything.

  19. This might already sound redundant but after every episode of Hibike so far I can’t help but think how gorgeous Asuka is. With her looks, figure, and personality, she’s almost too perfect that it didn’t come as a surprise she was the face of the band being the drum major. She’s not the only one though as I thought Hazuki and Midori really shone in their respective sections in the performance, Hazuki in particular looked really cute doing her pompom routine. And kudos too to Kousaka for calming the band down before their turn came up, as well as Taki-sensei for that pep talk. Kitauji really showed everyone who they were.

  20. the creator of the novel this adaption is based on is a woman and I highly doubt she gave the a ok for kyoani to use her characters however they like just to please a certain group of fans.

  21. I doubt this series will extend beyond the end of the school year, but Reina is someone who I could see eventually becoming the bucho of this club. She has the musical talent, the commitment to excellence, the ability to inspire (we’ve already witnessed this twice now with her Trumpet playing), and she has the physical look of a leader.

  22. This episode felt so real that it felt like a real life scenario in anime form. One of the most relatable protagonists I’ve ever seen. And one of those shows where you can actually ship for a potential couple where the show doesn’t have ‘romance’ as its genre but it feels so good to see romance bloom/form in it.

    KyoAni. I salute you, my all-time favorite studio.

    Red HeartGold ZX
  23. Ep 06:

    Show Spoiler ▼

    This Episode is a slow one, to catch some breath for us and the girls


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