During a house concert, the Bach family gets a visit by their son Wilhelm Friedemann, who has just given up his position in Dresden because he no longer could endure the reprisals taken by his superiors. After he helps his sister Frederike to tell father Johann Sebastian about her engagement to Christoph Altnikol, the family gets a visit by a messenger from the Saxon Court. Johann Sebastian is asked to take part in a musical competition against French composer Guy Marchand. Johann Sebastian, however, does not want to let his Thomanerchor down and so, he sends Friedemann to Dresden.
Friedemann wins the competition, as Guy Marchand takes flight during Friedemann’s performance. Many aristocrats, among which is Comtesse Antonia Kollowrat, come to Friedemann to be taught in music; Friedemann is ordered by the court to write a ballet. Friedemann and ballet dancer Mariella Fiorini fall in love with each other, which is also due the influence of Count Graf von Brühl, who has an eye on Antonia. After the ballet is successful, Friedemann is to be appointed court composer. As Antonia criticizes the ballet, Friedemann recognizes that the court’s superficiality does not go together with his artistic ambitions. Friedemann and Antonia fall in love with each other. Friedemann promises to find a new position and to get Antonia to join him; his father will surely help him.
However, Johann Sebastian dies. So, Friedemann is confronted with a series of disappointments. Being demanded again and again to play music following his father’s style, he finally passes, when applying in Braunschweig, one of his father’s early compositions off as one of his own. The truth is discovered, Antonia and Christoph are unable to understand Friedemann, who is frustrated and responds that he no longer wants to be compared with his father Johann Sebastian but wants to be Wilhelm Friedemann Bach. —Wikipedia