On my jazz-beflecked visit to the Castel Sant'Angelo, I had a thought that surely has occurred to countless Puccini-minded tourists before me: where did Tosca jump from exactly? If you look out across the Tiber from the upper terrace, as in the photo above, it seems as though the doomed diva would have a straight shot down. But there's a ledge in the way:
Unless Tosca had an extraordinary running jump, she would have simply landed there, and, somewhat anti-dramatically, would have needed to leap again. She might of course have gone off the side, into the courtyard below:
It's a considerable drop, but perhaps not automatically fatal, and it lacks style. The angles from the back are entirely unsuited to grandiose self-obliteration. What occurred to me is that we could be looking at a Reichenbach Falls situation. Tosca might have disappeared off the front, landed on the ledge, and then inched round the side and clambered through the little window there, even as Spoletta and the soldiers peered from above and concluded that she had plunged to her death:
I look forward to the shocking sequel, Tosca Returns.
Update: Jessica Duchen suggests some other operatic sequels. I should mention Christopher Rouse's fabulous percussion concerto Der gerettete Alberich, about the further adventures of the dwarf lord after the end of the Ring.