When Fritz finds her, he calls her a harlot and leaves again. Greta becomes the courtesan of a Count who had been wooing her, and five years later, Fritz succeeds in having his opera “The harp” premiered. Grete, who has since been abandoned by the Count and is now a common streetwalker called Tini, attends the performance. When she recognizes that she is the main protagonist, she faints and the premiere turns into a disaster. Eventually she learns that Fritz is terminally ill, and the two lovers meet again. However, their newly found happiness together comes too late. Fritz finds his mysterious “distant sound,” and dies in the arms of his long-lost love. Schreker’s drama, drawing much influence from Freud’s discovery of the unconscious, is set to music employing a wide range of stylistic features and instrumentation, including the harp, celesta and piano. For one reason or another, Schreker’s music was unable to find continued success, and the Nazis branded him a “degenerate” in 1932.
Franz Schreker: Der Ferne Klang (Finale), “Nachtstück”