K-Drama Review: “Do You Like Brahms” Comforts Like A Mellow Lullaby For All Our Youthful Woes
Unassumingly, Do You Like Brahms consoles our hearts with its melodramatic take on fulfilling one’s dreams, overcoming one’s fears and loving one’s self to truly be able to love another person.
Starring Kim Min Jae and Park Eun Bin who are both beaming with very youthful aura, Do You Like Brahms, ends on a high note as it deeply touches viewers through its story, script and narrative.
Title: Do You Like Brahms / 브람스를 좋아하세요
Themes: Youth | Romance | Classical Music
Length: 16 Episodes
Broadcast Date: 31 August 2020 to 20 October 2020
Main Leads: Kim Min Jae, Park Eun Bin, Park Ji Hyun, Kim Sun Cheol
Highlights: Melodramatic theme, Well-thought script hinged to the art of music, Touching portrayal from the actors
Overall Rating: Rewatch Value:
Quick Plot Round-Up *Spoiler Alert*
The entire plot of Do You Like Brahms is inspired by the unrequited love story between the famous German musicians, Johannes Brahms and Clara Schumann who is actually married to Robert Schumann, Brahms’ mentor.
Posted as question all throughout the series, Do You Like Brahms, serves as the reference as well as the foreshadowing force behind the characters’ and narrative’s development in the drama.
The Love Triangle
Do You Like Brahms sets the main spotlight on Park Joon Young (Kim Min Jae), an award-winning pianist who has fought so many internal struggles just to reach his current status as a musician. He is successful and has won many awards but inside him is an empty person who cannot find the meaning of everything that he has worked hard for.
Huge part of Joon Young’s success is because the Kyunghoo Foundation has supported him since the beginning of his career. However, this great indebtedness takes a toll on Joon Young as he feels he needs to repay them by winning awards in piano competitions.
Lee Jung Kyung (Park Ji Hyun), the heir to the Kyunghoo Foundation, is the initial love interest of Park Joon Young. Jung Kyung is likewise a talented violinist who has studied in The Julliard School in New York. However, Jung Kyung is also romantically linked to Joon Young’s best friend, Han Hyun Ho (Kim Sung Cheol) who is also a cellist. This forms the first love triangle in the drama.
The Breath of Fresh Air
Meanwhile, Chae Song Ah (Park Eun Bin) plays the aspiring violinist in the drama. Unlike the Lee Jung Kyung, Chae Song Ah seems to lack natural talent to make it as she has started late in pursuing her love for violin. This makes it hard for her, physically and emotionally, to keep up with her younger contemporaries. Despite this, she keeps proving it to herself, her family and everyone around her that she is deserving of a chance to perform and play the violin.
Chae Song Ah and Park Joon Young cross paths in a concert where Song Ah gets humiliated by Joon Young’s professor. From then on, Joon Young seems to have taken a special penchant and attentiveness for the warmth that is radiating from Song Ah.
- K-Drama Premiere: “Do You Like Brahms” Soothes And Aches The Soul With A Story About Unexpressed Love
Strong Musical References in its Narrative and Script
Do You Like Brahms proves to be a well-thought of series with its story and script never failing to reference back to classical music – with episode titles such as Poco a Poco: Slowly, Gradually, Accelerando: Accelerating, Raffrenando: Controlling One’s Pace and Crescendo: Gradually Louder preluding the story’s pace and development.
In all sixteen episodes, Do You Like Brahms, has never missed its allegory of relaying its message through music, classical pieces and instruments.
Touching Portrayal from Kim Min Jae and Park Eun Bin
Kim Min Jae and Park Eun Bin have both gave their all for a convincing and touching portrayal as Joon Young and Song Ah.
Park Joon Young
Playing Park Joon Young is no easy feat yet Kim Min Jae has certainly delivered a laudable performance. With a character who expresses his feelings through music and rarely through words, Kim Min Jae has done a lot to convey Joon Young’s emotions through his demeanor, facial expressions and voice modulation.
It is impeccably believable that there is no other actor that could have played Park Joon Young’s character better. With Do You Like Brahms being his first drama to star as the lead, viewers are already eager to see what is next for Kim Min Jae.
Chae Song Ah
Park Eun Bin has likewise given so much life to Chae Song Ah’s warmth. Despite being emotionally beaten a couple of times for being a mediocre violinist, Cha Song Ah continues to see a gleam of hope. On the outward, she may seem frail but Chae Song Ah is a fighter – who chooses herself for her own good more than anything else.
Sweet Chemistry Amid A Mellow Narrative
Together, Kim Min Jae and Park Eun Bin form a sweet, pure and sincere chemistry as Park Joon Young and Cha Song Ah. Perfectly complimenting each other, both actors have effortlessly created heart-fluttering scenes amid the melodramatic ambiance of the drama.
Message of Hope and Warmth
Although the pace and development of the story seems to have taken a descending tempo during the second half of the drama, its message of hope continues to shine.
With Joon Young and Song Ah being able to grow out of their own fears, prejudices and resentments, Do You Like Brahms offers a very comforting warmth and validation that one must be able to take care of himself first to be able to truly love another person.
Recommendations and Afterthoughts
Do You Like Brahms has ended beautifully, giving smiles to everyone who has joined the journey of Joon Young and Song Ah. Apart from telling stories about classical music, passion and love, it has also warmly relayed its message about loving one’s self and freeing one’s self from resentments and guilt.
Do You Like Brahms is indeed a drama worth watching either on a binge or per episode.