Shuhei Amamiya transfers into Kai Ichinose's elementary school. As an aspiring pianist, he's shocked that Kai has no teacher after hearing him play.
To Ajino, who hurt his musical abilities in a car accident, meeting Kai seems like fate. But Kai just wants to be able to play a certain Chopin piece.
Ajino sets a Mozart piece as Kai's entry for the contest, but Kai worries that he hasn't found his own style of playing. Shuhei is favored to win.
After Takako's performance, it's time for Kai to take the stage. With his mother, Ajino and Shuhei's father watching, it's time to show his skills.
After the contest, Shuhei transfers back to Tokyo and Kai finds that the piano in the woods is broken. Takako vows to win for Kai's sake.
The piano in the forest goes up in flames, but Ajino tells Kai that it can live on within him. His mother tells him to concentrate on his music.
Five years later, Shuhei returns to Japan determined to see Kai again. After some searching, he finds his friend in a very unexpected place.
An injured Takako travels to Oita with her teacher Shiba, who first noticed her at the competition five years before. There, she meets Kai again.
At the Chopin competition preliminaries in Poland, Kai nearly has a meltdown, but Shuhei performs as usual. Shuhei is frustrated when they meet again.
The first contestants take the stage for the Chopin competition. Kai is shocked that a Chinese pianist's playing sounds just like Ajino's.
Shuhei takes the stage at the competition, impressing everyone. Taking a walk to calm his nerves, Kai meets Polish pianist, Lech.
It’s finally Kai’s turn to play. His playing transports the audience to the forest as Shuhei, Takako and Ajino reflect on their friend’s journey.
The names of those advancing to the second round of the Chopin competition are announced, and Shuhei is shocked when Adamski fails to make the cut.
Following Sophie Ormesson, Wei Pang takes the stage. Though deeply influenced by Ajino, he demonstrates a depth and pain not found in Ajino's playing.
Out of the remaining 30 pianists, only 12 will advance to the final round. Shuhei takes the stage with just one goal in mind for his performance.
Lech Szymanowski performs with his sister, Emilia in his heart. Despite the hometown preference for a Polish contestant, Kai's playing wows the crowd.
Once Kai finishes his performance, it's all up to the judges. But one judge argues against allowing Kai to advance and requests a complete recount.
After the results are announced, Kai catches Shuhei at a bad time. The next day, they have a painful conversation in a park.
In the last round, pianists perform with an orchestra. Rumors fly when Wei Pang doesn't show up as scheduled, while Kai worries about Shuhei.
After reuniting in a practice room at the Chopin Academy, Kai and Shuhei take a morning walk through Warsaw. Shuhei is shocked by Kai's plans.
A painful article is published about Wei Pang's past, but all he cares about is Ajino's opinion. Before Pang takes the stage, they meet on the stairs.
Though Lech wants to win for his sister's sake, the final day is Kai's chance to show the world who he is and how far he's come with his performance.
Kai's performance is a triumph, but Lech has the final slot -- and hometown support. As he plays, he has a vision of his sister, Emilia.
The winners are finally announced to an electrified audience. Shuhei sheds tears of joy when he hears Kai's placement. Ajino receives shocking news.