A dancing team breaks up so that she can star in a show; but he finds a new dancer to replace her in more ways than one.
Don Hewes (Fred Astaire) sings "Happy Easter" and buys a woman's hat. He sings "Drum Crazy" and dances. Nadine Hale (Ann Miller) tells Don that she has a good offer. Don sings "It Only Happens When I Dance with You," and they dance. Nadine says she signed a contract. Don is disappointed and goes to a bar. He sees Hannah Brown (Judy Garland) dancing in the chorus and offers her $150 to be his dance partner. Hannah sings "I Want to Go Back to Michigan."
Hannah finds Don and says she quit her job. Don teaches her how to dance with him. Hannah likes the Easter parade, and he says she will be a star by next year. Don and Hannah dance on stage. Nadine meets Jonathan Harrow (Peter Lawford) for lunch and indicates she likes him; but when Don arrives, Jonathan leaves. Nadine and Don trade barbs. Jonathan meets Hannah in the rain, and they sing "A Fella with an Umbrella."
Don has Hannah sing "I Love a Piano." On stage they sing "Snookey Ookums." They try out for Ziegfeld, singing "All Aboard for Alabam." Nadine is the star of the show, and Hannah asks Don if he was in love with her. Jonathan asks Hannah for a date. Don tells Hannah that they are not in the show. Jonathan arrives, and Don realizes he is going out with Hannah. She asks Jonathan about Don. Jonathan tells Hannah that he is in love with her, but she says she is in love with Don.
Nadine stars in the Follies of 1912, sings "Shaking the Blues Away," and tap dances. Hannah is worried about Don, but he tells her they have a show. Hannah dines with Don and gets upset when he talks business; but he kisses her, and she stays. They open the show. Don sings "Stepping Out" and dances. Don and Hannah sing "We'll Walk Up the Avenue." The maid Essie tells Nadine that the show was poor. Don takes Hannah to a floor show of the Follies. Nadine dances and gets Don to dance with her. Hannah leaves and goes back to the bar and talks to bartender Mike (Clinton Sundberg). Hannah sings "No Next Time" and cries. She finds Don waiting outside her door and says he is still in love with Nadine, but Don says he wants Hannah.
Jonathan calls on Hannah, and she says she loves Don. Jonathan is seeing Nadine. Don gets flowers and a hat with a rabbit. Hannah comes in and sings "Easter Parade."
Songs by Irving Berlin highlight this musical about
dancers in a romantic chasing circle, as Don loves Nadine who
loves Jonathan who loves Hannah who loves Don; but Don gets over
Nadine with Hannah, and Jonathan accepts Nadine.