The Marschallin has a young lover, Octavian – but she knows that their love will end. Together with Octavian, she plots to save the beautiful young Sophie von Faninal from a loveless marriage to the boorish Baron Ochs.
By disguising himself as a serving wench, Octavian manages to pique the lecherous Ochs’s attentions. At a tavern he carefully arranges it so that Sophie’s father discovers Ochs’s philandering ways – leaving her free to marry Octavian. The Marschallin graciously gives her blessing to the match.