Puccini's western masterpiece was at the metropolitan opera. Deborah Voigt the Wagner diva sang the lead role of Winnie, the salon girl with the golden heart. What a role, she rode horses, shot a rifle, broke up fights and tutored miners to read and to study the Bible.
She helped them write letters to their mothers,resolve fights and ward off the advances of Jack the local sheriff and gambler. Jack Vance has resolved to marry Winnie and every man is in love with her. There is a notorious bandit on the loose and Wells Fargo is going to get him. Rodriguez.
Rodriguez comes to the tavern and says his name is Dick Johnson. He and Winnie fall in love and in one of THE most romantic scenes ever he rides to her cabin and they sing outside the little cabin in the snow. Just beautiful.
He is discovered to be Rodriguez and she gambles for his life afer Vance shoots him in her cabin. She cheats and wins.
In the end, when Rodriguez is set to be hung, she saves him by imploring to their Christianity and sense that all sinners can be saved.
Voigt was stunning and Marcello as the dashing bandit terrific. The acting was wonderful...what a concept a western with glorious singing!
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