While the crew of the U.S.S. Voyager helps a Qomari ship make repairs, the Qomar on board thumb their noses at the crew's inferiority. They live in a closed system and are not well-versed in social interaction. Nor are they familiar with singing, which the Doctor does as he tends to their medical needs. The visitors are quickly enthralled with the Doctor's voice and invite the Voyager crew to visit their nearby planetary alliance. As a goodwill gesture, Captain Janeway arranges a musical concert starring the Doctor, of whom the Qomar cannot seem to get enough.
After a recital, the Doctor is invited to perform on the Qomar planet and introduce the concept of music to all of its inhabitants. He excitedly agrees and plans a dazzling operatic performance complete with costumes and an elaborate set. Tincoo assures him she will make any arrangements he may need and is baffled by his crew's seeming lack of appreciation of his talents. As he steps onto the stage, he receives a standing ovation from the packed stadium.
Following the Doctor's latest concert, Voyager's communication system is inundated with transmissions to the maestro. Seven of Nine mistakes it for attempted sabotage, but Janeway explains that the correspondence is just fan mail. Qomari visitors flood the ship for a chance to see him, and the Doctor is pleased with the attention. Janeway is eventually annoyed by his neglect of his duties and admonishes him to get back to work. Tincoo urges the Doctor to stay on Qomar with her after Voyager leaves.
Believing he can realize his life dreams and enjoy the love of a woman, the Doctor turns in his resignation. Despite Janeway's protests, the Doctor insists he should have the right to self-determination. His life on Voyager becomes routine and he believes that the Qomar really appreciate him for who he is and his ability to bring music to their lives. As the Doctor says goodbye to the crew, Tincoo summons him. She has created a superior holomatrix that can hit the high notes the Doctor cannot reach and explains that he is no longer needed on their planet.
Although the Doctor protests that a superior holomatrix cannot replace the passion and artistry that he brings to the music, Tincoo only sees the situation from a mathematical angle. She is more concerned with hitting the scales than understanding their beauty. Heartbroken, the Doctor fills his final show with the melancholy of lost love. Afterwards, the holomatrix steps in with a purely technical performance, which the Qomar applaud wildly. Back on Voyager, the Doctor realizes he has friends there who do truly appreciate him as an individual with unique abilities.
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