Welcome! High School (ようこそハイスクール Yōkoso Hai Sukūru ) is the first episode of the Hibike! Euphonium anime series. It was first broadcast on April 7, 2015. The episode is directed by Naoko Yamada, who also handled the episode's storyboard, with screenplay by Jukki Hanada, animation direction by Seiichi Akitake and music direction by Hiroyuki Takahashi.
After a falling out with her friend and former bandmate Reina Kousaka during their middle school days, Kumiko Oumae enrolls in Kitauji High School, wanting to get a fresh start. However, during the student organization recruitment period, she stumbles upon a live performance of the school's own concert band. Immediately, as a member of an award-winning band some time ago, she notices the problems with the band.
The first day of school begins with Kumiko making friends with her energetic seatmate Hazuki Katou and the shy Sapphire Kawashima, whose name made her stand out from the class. The three eventually reveal their own interest in the school's concert band and they visit their band room, where they are warmly welcomed by one of its members, the eccentric Asuka Tanaka. They also end up seeing someone from Kumiko's past, none other than Reina Kousaka, wanting to join the band.
Kumiko, Hazuki and Sapphire talk about Reina and the school band on their way back home. Both Kumiko and Sapphire were disappointed by the school band's quality, putting them among bands who only vie for a silver in prefectural contests, but Sapphire decides to join. Kumiko remains unsure, on the other hand.
In the park near her home, Kumiko meets Shuuichi Tsukamoto, a childhood friend of hers. After an awkward conversation between the two, Kumiko leaves, telling Shuuichi that she has decided to not join the school band. At home, her older sister also catches wind of her decision to stay away from band, and the question of whether she would quit playing the euphonium for good looms over her mind during the rest of the afternoon.
The next day, after remembering about her older sister's comments on her hair, Kumiko wears her hair untied like in her middle school days. Meanwhile, Hazuki reveals her enthusiasm in learning how to play brass, to the point of buying a mouthpiece for practice. Sapphire then tells Kumiko that she and Hazuki will join the school band. After some hesitation, Kumiko agrees to join the two. However, the next step now involves resolving her past with Reina.
- In order of appearance:
Key Differences Between Anime and Light Novel
- Theme Song of Abarenbou Shogun - Composed by Shunsuke Kikuchi, arrangement by Akito Matsuda
- "Orpheus in the Underworld", most notably the Galop Infernal - Composed by Jacques Offenbach