Ritsu invites her along with his brother Kyoya Kisaragi to join Seiso Gakuen at the start of the anime series. Since childhood, Kanade admired Ritsu and would love hearing him play his violin. He was really sweet, supportive and kind to her when they were children, even going to the extent of fetching Kanade her hat when it fell into a stream, thus drenching himself in water and flashing her a reassuring smile when he got back her hat, bringing a smile to her face. He was more like a reliable older brother to her. When they were young, he gives her a magical ring which he says he received from a musical fairy, right before permanently leaving for Seiso Gakuen to further his studies.
From the time he meets her, he was always cold and distant towards her. He kept taunting her, saying that he would crush her in the concours, but she didn't seem to understand the reason as to why he hated her to such an extent. At one point when she has a conversation with Ritsu and the topic of the golden string came up, she remembers that it was given to her by someone from her childhood but couldn't recollect the person's face. Similarly, she kept getting flashbacks of someone from her past, saying that they hated her and that they won't forgive her. Later in the series when Hido kidnaps Kanade, and on receiving a text message from the said kidnapper, Leiji comes to her rescue. There he protects Kanade from an assault by Hido, taking the hit for her. Eventually they end up locked in the basement, and it is then where she gradually remembers her past with Leiji. When they are rescued several moments later, she promises him that she will take him on in the finals.