Gabriella speaks to a gathering crowd with the rope that will end her life around her neck. This once privileged seventeen-year-old, begs the crowd to listen to her story to pass the time in the Italian countryside in 1710. She is charged with her best friend’s murder and will surely hang before the day ends.
The beautiful girl about to hang had lived at the Oespedale dela Pieta a home for the illegitimate and inconvenient daughters of nobility in eighteenth-century Venice Italy. Gabriella’s crime was the curiosity about life that left her pregnant by a beautiful stable-boy. Her prospective fiancé’s mother was not amused and she was sent to teach music to the girls and perhaps find a suitable husband who would overlook her past.
At the Oespedale, Gabriella meets the Maestro of the Concerti, Antonio Vivaldi and falls in love with Raphael, the Overseer. When she tries to discover the cause of a curse that claims the lives of unborn children at the Oespedale, and her friend is murdered, Gabriella is charged with the murder. An unlikely trio of men conspire to free her before the hangman arrives.