Anime and the Classics: Pachelbel’s “Canon in D major”

Today the spotlight falls on Johann Pachelbel‘s Kanon und Gigue in D-Dur für drei Violinen und Basso Continuo, featured in the 2006 animated series Kanon.


Canon in D major was used at various points throughout the series, but it figures most prominently in Episode 14 (“A Cracked Concerto”). Sayuri and Yuuichi discuss the piece over afternoon tea from approximately 15:36 (ADV R1 DVD timestamp). A version of the piece can be heard in the background as the scene plays out.

Sayuri: Do you know the name of this song?
Yuuichi: No, although I’ve heard it often.

Sayuri: It’s Canon. Pachelbel’s Canon.
Yuuichi: Canon

Sayuri: The same melody repeats itself, and gradually grows richer as the chords harmonise beautifully together. Wouldn’t it be great if we could live lives that didn’t seem to change, but we could also make gradual changes, just like the song?
Yuuichi: Yeah, that’s true.

Sayuri: Maybe one day, remembering Kazuya won’t only be with sadness.


Numerous variations on Pachelbel’s original piece (first written c. 1680) have been composed through the centuries, ranging from beautiful renditions in true classical form to more recent punk-rock arrangements set to drums and electric guitars. Two orchestral settings are provided here for your listening pleasure. The first is from a performance by the London Symphony Orchestra, while the second comes to us from the Slovak Chamber Orchestra.


Memento – summary of Episode 14 (with screencaps) and a brief, but interesting, rant about the piece
Random Curiosity – summary of Episode 14 (with screencaps); not much is said about the piece itself

3 Responses

  1. It is a nice melody with numerous variations used quite often.

  2. @Kitsune: Man, that Paravonian rant really cracked me up. Thanks for the link!

  3. […] by PunkRockPrincess247 on Fri 30-1-2009 Pachelbel’s canon in D Saved by cymy on Wed 28-1-2009 Anime and the Classics: Pachelbel’s “Canon in D major” Saved by paton on Sat 24-1-2009 Pachelbel’s Canon on Electric Steroids Saved by moondlab on Wed […]

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