Maestro ending explained: What happens to Leonard and Felicia in the end?

Maestro is Bradley Cooper's acclaimed Leonard Bernstein biopic now streaming on Netflix. Keep reading for spoilers regarding how the movie ends.

Maestro. (L to R) Bradley Cooper as Leonard Bernstein (Director/Writer/Producer) and Carey Mulligan as Felicia Montealegre in Maestro. Cr. Jason McDonald/Netflix © 2023.
Maestro. (L to R) Bradley Cooper as Leonard Bernstein (Director/Writer/Producer) and Carey Mulligan as Felicia Montealegre in Maestro. Cr. Jason McDonald/Netflix © 2023. /
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With awards season officially underway, several notable contenders are coming to streaming services in the coming months, with Bradley Cooper's biographical film about composer Leonard Bernstein among the latest. Maestro is now streaming on Netflix and the acclaimed film has receive significant buzz particularly for its leading performances from Cooper and Carey Mulligan, who plays Bernstein's wife Felicia Montealegre.

Spoilers ahead for the end of Maestro

Maestro is primarily about Bernstein and his journey as a composer, but it also focuses heavily on the relationship between him and Felicia, particularly how their relationship started and its various ups and downs. For those who are considering watching the movie, or maybe watched part of it and don't feel like finishing, we're delving into the movie's ending below.

What happens between Leonard and Felicia?

Sadly, Felicia is diagnosed with lung cancer and the final act of Maestro is dedicated to her, Leonard, and their children dealing with her illness as she goes through chemotherapy. In the end, Felicia dies from the disease and Leonard is left grieving her death. Despite everything they went through together, and the many ups and downs, he realizes that she had a tremendous impact on him creatively and as a life partner. Felicia dies in her husband's arms in 1978.

Maestro
Maestro. (L to R) Carey Mulligan as Felicia Montealegre and Bradley Cooper as Leonard Bernstein (Director/Writer/Producer) in Maestro. Cr. Courtesy of Netflix © 2023. /

How does Maestro end?

Maestro's ending makes Leonard's devotion to his late wife clear. Seeing him as a much older man during his interview, he reflects on Felicia's passing and has a flashback to her walking in their garden, which is the film's final image.

After Felicia passes away, he and his children move away from their home and Leonard does eventually go back to teaching. He has affairs with some of his male students and continues to party regularly. While the movie doesn't show his death, in real life, Leonard Bernstein passed away at the age of 70 in October 1990.

Maestro is now streaming exclusively on Netflix.

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