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Rigoletto

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If you think there's a lot of lust, infidelity, pointless violence and deception on television, wait till you see Rigoletto. The New Orleans Opera Association has been trying to make sure everyone knows that Giuseppe Verdi's tawdry but classic opera was nearly banned as immoral and obscenely trivial when it debuted in Venice in 1851. (It was based on Victor Hugo's play Le Roi s'Amuse, which had been censored for years in France.) The hunchbacked jester Rigoletto cherishes his daughter and tries to hide her from society and the unworthiness of his profession. Instead, she meets the lusty and fidelity-challenged Duke, her father's master. The two are charmed with each other and contemplate pure romantic love, but there are many scores to be settled before the two can escape the designs of the world they are caught in. Rigoletto is one of the most popular and frequently staged operas. English supertitles provide translation. Tickets $30-$120. — Will Coviello

8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., March 14-15; 2:30 p.m. Sun., March 16

Tulane University, McAlister Auditorium, 529-3000; www.neworleansopera.org

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