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Liz Smith speaks

US columnist Liz Smith always champions Madonna in her newspaper columns - here are extracts of two of her columns taking a non-sensationalist view of the happenings of last week:

'My concerts are always my escape. I get onstage and I just forget everything but the music and the audience. The minute the lights go out, I’m back to....well, reality.'
That was Madonna, Monday night, at the after-party celebrating the premiere of her film directorial début, the offbeat and often charming 'Filth and Wisdom.'
Madonna, beautiful but perilously slender in a modest black frock, did not elaborate on her current 'reality.' Perhaps she did not need to. Conspicuously absent was her husband, director Guy Ritchie.

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On Wednesday my phone rang off the hook. Everybody wanted to know what I thought about Madonna and Guy Ritchie splitting up; and why is the media still interested in her? (I love it when even the press asks the press why we are all covering something.)
Well, of course there is the normal interest in celeb bad news. But no matter how often the media says, 'She’s over,' she’s not. Madonna is still, all in all, THE global celebrity after a quarter century in the spotlight.

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