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Madonna to headline Pride event at Hudson River Park’s Pier 97

It’s official: Madonna will get into the groove at World Pride NYC.

After months of speculation by rabid fans, NYC Pride confirmed Monday that the Material Girl will appear at the two-day Pride Island dance party on June 30 at Hudson River Park’s Pier 97.

The event will officially close out the month-long World Pride and Stonewall 50th anniversary celebration. (Grace Jones headlines opening day, June 29.)

Madonna promoted her appearance in a video released via NBC’s 'Today' show, in which she draped herself in a rainbow flag emblazoned with the logo for her 14th studio album, 'Madame X,' to be released June 14.

'I hear you!' she said in the video shot at an unspecified beach location. 'I will be on Pride Island, where I was born.'

From New York Post


Madonna makes a statement at Eurovision

Madonna's much-anticipated appearance at the Eurovision Song Contest in Israel has drawn a mixed response from viewers.

The star sported a black cape and eyepatch during her performance of 1989 hit Like A Prayer and new single Future, featuring US rapper Quavo.

Madonna defied calls from activists to cancel her appearance in Tel Aviv.

But organisers said the inclusion of Israeli and Palestinian flags in the show was not approved in advance.

Two of her dancers - each wearing a respective flag - walked arm in arm.

'In the live broadcast... two of Madonna's dancers briefly displayed the Israeli and Palestinian flags on the back of their outfits,' a statement from the organisers said following the contest.

'This element of the performance was not part of the rehearsals which had been cleared,' it added. 'The Eurovision Song Contest is a non-political event and Madonna had been made aware of this.'

While some criticised her decision to make a statement, others praised her for using her large platform to make a point.

From BBC News


Madonna performs at Eurovision flanked by 30 dancers dressed as monks

Madonna has taken to the stage at the Eurovision Song Contest flanked by as many as 30 dancers dressed as monks.

The Queen of Pop appeared at the top of a flight of steps, dressed in a cape and hood and wearing a metal breastplate.

Brandishing a cross, she stepped slowly towards the crowd at the Expo Tel Aviv and sung her 1989 hit Like A Prayer to raucous applause.

As the song reached it climax, her dancers pulled their hoods aside to reveal gas masks adorned with flowers.

The 60-year-old star then performed new song Future, a collaboration with Migos rapper Quavo who appeared at her side.

Her highly-anticipated and controversial performance had drawn criticism from musicians and pro-Palestinian activists from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign, who called on her to cancel the show.

But in a statement this week, Madonna said she wanted to use her performance to create 'a new path toward peace' and would not be cowed by political pressure.

Earlier in the night she appeared in a pre-recorded message, warning the public “not underestimate the power of music to bring people together”.

She said: 'You’re all winners, no matter what happens. The reason I mean that is because to get here, where you are right now, is not easy. Right? First you had a dream and then you had to believe in that dream, and you had to make many sacrifices. That makes you a winner no matter what. Another really obvious statement is, look at all the delegates behind us, everyone here is from all over the world. So many countries that I have been privileged not just to visit but to experience. And the one thing that brings me to those countries, and the thing that brings all these people here tonight, is music. So let’s not underestimate the power of music to bring people together. That’s the most important thing. Music makes the people come together.;

Madonna’s performance comes as the Like A Prayer singer returns following a four-year hiatus.

She is preparing to release Madame X, her 14th album, and earlier this month announced a world tour including a string of shows at the London Palladium.

From PA Via Yahoo! News


Madonna Performs at Eurovision in Tel Aviv: ‘Never Underestimate the Power of Music’

Madonna took the stage at the Eurovision Song Contest in Tel Aviv on Saturday night (May 18). The appearance comes ahead of the release of her forthcoming album 'Madame X,' due out on June 14.

Following performances from Israeli singer-songwriter Idan Raichel and 2018 Eurovision winner Netta Barzilai, who sang her latest single 'Nana Banana,' Madonna opened her set with 'Like a Prayer.' The stage was appropriately propped to resemble an ancient church, the sort you would find in any number of cities in Israel. Accompanying Madonna on the controversial and provocative 1989 smash, was a back-up choir-cum-dancers dressed in traditional monk attire.

It followed with a highly choreographed version of 'Future,' a track by Quavo of Migos, who was also in attendance (earlier, he spoke of his trip to Jerusalem as 'really special'). The two held hands as the song came to a close, and behind them were projected the words 'Wake Up.'

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Earlier in the show, Madonna was interviewed briefly. Wearing her new signature eyepatch and with her hair in braids, Madonna joked that she only sees the beach from her hotel perch. She then addressed the contestants participating in the international music contest. 'You’re all winners,' she said. 'To get where you are right now is not easy. … You’ve earned your way to the place where you are right now. That makes you a winner no matter what happens.'

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Asked by the show’s host if she wanted to use the global platform to send a message, Madonna did just that. 'Look at all the delegates everybody is here from all over the world. And the thing that brings all of these people together is music. So let’s never underestimate the power or music to bring people together.'

She then led the 5,000 in attendance in a chant of the chorus to her 2000 hit 'Music,' joshing the crowd and its ability to 'follow directions. 'Music makes the people come together,' she sang.

Madonna’s participation in the beloved international competition was not without controversy. On May 14, her much-publicized performance came into question after the show’s organizers revealed that no contract had yet been signed. The paperwork was sorted out just in the nick of time and on May 16, Madonna was given the all-clear.

From Variety


Madonna to channel Joan of Arc at Eurovision, designer Gaultier says

Jean-Paul Gaultier has dressed Madonna as a 'futuristic' Joan of Arc for her guest performance at the Eurovision Song Contest final in Israel, the fashion designer told Reuters on Saturday.

'It’s fantastic to have Madonna, especially for the Eurovision,' Gaultier said outside the Tel Aviv venue of the 2019 songfest.

The French designer said his inspiration came from one of his own countrywomen.

'Kind of Joan of Arc, you know? Because she is like a winner - a winner, kind of. A warrior, let’s say,' he said, smiling.

'Twenty years, thirty years ago (Madonna) didn’t know what was Eurovision, and now she’s singing there.'

Madonna was scheduled to perform two songs at the music competition - new number 'Future' and her 1989 hit 'Like A Prayer'.

From Reuters


Tonight is the Night! Where to watch Eurovision


Eurovision 2019 host promises 'unbelievable' Madonna performance

The Eurovision Song Contest confirmed its worst-kept secret earlier this week by officially announcing that the one and only Madonna would be performing during the show's 2019 Grand Final.

According to the announcement, Madonna will be performing her classic hit 'Like A Prayer' as well as her new single 'Future', and now one of the hosts of tonight's (May 18) show has teased that the superstar has something brilliant planned.

'I saw the rehearsal yesterday,' Assi Azar told Graham Norton on his Radio 2 show this morning.

'It's an amazing show, what she's doing on the stage. She's literally taking over our entire stage, changing it completely. I can say she's literally building a chapel inside our arena in 40 seconds. That's the time she has from the moment we get off the stage to the moment she goes on the stage. It's unbelievable.'

And according to Assi, who'll be hosting the show alongside Erez Tal, Bar Refaeli and Lucy Ayoub live from Expo Tel Aviv, there was never any doubt in his mind that Madonna would be performing, despite all the conflicting reports.

'I think that we should be so honoured that Madonna came all the way here to perform for us,' he said. 'Of course. Both sides get a lot out of it - Eurovision gets Madonna, no need to explain, Madonna gets the 200 million viewers that are watching her tonight. Every time that something happened like she is performing, she's not performing, I thought, 'It's going to close at the end'. She's gonna perform at the end, so let's just move on from the ego issues of both sides.'

You'll be able to watch the whole show live on BBC One, and if you haven't got access to that the evening will also be live streamed for free on YouTube.

From Digital Spy


Madonna rehearses with Quavo ahead of long-awaited Eurovision set

Madonna has offered fans a rare look into her rehearsals with Migos rapper Quavo ahead of their performance at the Eurovision Song Contest grand final on Saturday.

In footage posted to the 60-year-old star’s Instagram story, the pair practice on-stage against a backdrop of towering flames, dressed in black.

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In another video, their silhouettes illuminate the rear of a stage while a final clip shows the words 'Wake Up' projected across a darkened venue in the city.

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The Atlanta rapper - real name Quavious Keyate Marshall - was yesterday confirmed as performing during Madonna’s interval show in Tel Aviv, Israel, after a week of speculation.

Today Madonna released the Quavo-featuring single Future from her upcoming 14th album Madame X.

And last night he played an impromptu sold-out concert at the Hangar 11 venue in Tel Aviv, announced only a week before.

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From PA Via Yahoo! News


Madonna parties with Quavo in Tel Aviv

Madonna has signed her Eurovision contract at the 11th hour - but it doesn’t look like she’s stressed about the last minute situation at all. The 60-year-old was wearing her holiday best as she rocked up to Quavo’s pop-up concert in Tel Aviv, just hours after her Eurovision performance was confirmed

Serving looks like only the Queen of Pop can, Madge was wearing a multi-coloured print blouse and matching shorts over fishnets, and accessorised with numerous necklaces and a pair of plastic goggles. The category is welder realness. Madonna wore her hair in plaited pigtails and donned a pair of heel boots as she strutted into Hangar 11, where her Future collaborator Quavo was holding a surprise gig. The Migos rapper flew into Israel ahead of his performance with Madge on Saturday night, and the pop legend watched the hip-hop star perform hits like Motor Sport and Bad and Boujee before the nightclub cleared out for a Euroclub bash.

She will be performing Future, from her new album Madame X, with Quavo, as well as her classic song Like A Prayer, during the interval act in Expo Tel Aviv on Saturday night. The Like A Virgin star’s appearance at Eurovision was first rumoured back in April, with reports claiming she would be paid $1 million (£764,000) for playing two songs at the final. However, just days ago, her performance was still up in the air. Eurovision executive organiser Jon Ola Sand said on Monday: ‘The European Broadcasting Union has never confirmed Madonna as an act. If we do not have a signed contract she cannot perform on our stage.’

However, Madonna arrived in Tel Aviv late on Tuesday night, and shared pictures and videos of rehearsals to Instagram, saying she was planning something ‘special’ for her fans. And in the press room at the Eurovision venue on Thursday night, her performance was officially confirmed by organisers.

From Metro.co.uk

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Madonna finally signs Eurovision contract

After months of stalled negotiations, Madonna signed a contract on Thursday morning to appear at the Eurovision Song Contest this Saturday night, KAN reported.

The singer arrived in Israel late Tuesday night, and clashed with European Broadcasting Union officials over starting rehearsals without a signed deal. Nevertheless, Madonna held a rehearsal Wednesday at the Expo Tel Aviv without a contract, and has now fully committed to appearing at the show, according to Hebrew media reports. According to insiders, the EBU is scheduled to officially announce the performance at some point on Thursday.

The singer held a second closed rehearsal at the venue on Thursday morning.

The reason for the extended holdup in signing a contract was never made clear. But the clash was not believed to be about money, since the cost of her appearance is being covered by Israeli-Canadian billionaire Sylvan Adams. Varying reports said Madonna and the EBU clashed over copyright concerns, as well as over the politicized content of her songs and performance.

On Thursday she posted another photo to Instagram of her in full costume, writing 'Madame X is a Saint.....' She followed it up with snapshots of her captioned 'Madame X is a Ray of Light' and 'Madame X is Praying....'

Madonna is slated to take the stage in the Expo Tel Aviv on Saturday night as an interval act, and perform while the votes are being cast and counted. She is expected to perform her classic hit 'Like A Prayer,' as well as the song 'Future' from her upcoming album, Madame X. Rapper Quavo of the trio Migos - who collaborated with Madonna on 'Future' - is also in Israel, and slated to give a sold out concert in Tel Aviv Thursday night, before appearing with Madonna at the Eurovision on Saturday.

From The Jerusalem Post


Madonna teases Eurovision performance ‘for her fans’ as she arrives in Tel Aviv

Madonna’s Eurovision Song Contest final performance was up in the air after organisers admitted she has yet to sign a contract. However, the Queen of Pop landed in Tel Aviv, Israel, late last night and headed straight to rehearsal, basically confirming she will be the final interval act. Madge was pictured disembarking a private plane in Tel Aviv on Tuesday night as the first Eurovision semi-final took place at Expo Tel Aviv.

The 61-year-old teased her grand performance over on Instagram - without mentioning Eurovision, of course, because that would be telling. The Medellin singer posted a Boomerang of rehearsals, and wore a black corset and an eye patch as a dancer wrapped herself around Madonna’s leg. After this, she shared a close-up of her face, as she wore a ‘Madame X’ patch, cross-studded embellished sleeves and a crystal headpiece. Both posts were captioned: ‘Madame X is preparing something special for her fans...’

Comments reading ‘Eurovision???????’ flooded the posts, with one fan writing: ‘Welcome to ISRAEL Queen!!!’ Another comment read: ‘Just landed in Tel Aviv and went straight to rehearsal. That’s DEDICATION y’all.’ However, others were disappointed, with one person writing: ‘I’m so disappointed you went to Israel, obviously publicity is more important to you than the suffering of the Palestinian people.'

Roger Waters was among those asking Madonna to cancel her Eurovision performance in Israel, due to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories and the violation of Palestinian human rights. However, the Like A Virgin star seemed to reject calls to boycott the contest, saying: ‘I’ll never stop playing music to suit someone’s political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be.

It is thought Madge is set to perform a new song from her album Madame X, as well as a classic hit, believed to be Like A Prayer. She will be performing at the interval of the final, after the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Israel, Cyprus, Iceland, Australia, San Marino, Slovenia, Belarus, Serbia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece and 10 other nations to be decided in the second semi-final try their best to be named Eurovision champ 2019. It is believed Madonna is being paid $1 million (£764,000) for the gig.

From Metro.co.uk


Madonna's Eurovision performance thrown into doubt by organisers

Madonna's performance at the Eurovision Song Contest on Saturday has been thrown into doubt by organisers who say she has not yet signed a contract for the show.

In April, it was announced that the pop superstar would perform two songs at the grand final in Tel Aviv in Israel on Saturday, May 18.

However, the show's organisers have now cast doubt on her performance.

Eurovision's executive supervisor Jon Ola Sand said on Monday during a press conference: 'The European Broadcasting Union has never confirmed Madonna as an act. If we do not have a signed contract she cannot perform on our stage.'

Sand, who has produced the song contest since 2010, said that negotiations with Madonna are still ongoing.

'We are in a situation now that is a bit strange, We have an artist who would like to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest, and who we would love to welcome on that stage. But for that we need to have the framework secured. We are negotiating now, in the final stage of that - but if there is no signed contract this week, she will not be on the stage.'

On Tuesday, Madonna defended her decision to perform at the song contest in Israel following calls for a boycott of the competition by pro-Palestinian activists who want companies, performers and governments to disengage from Israel.

'I'll never stop playing music to suit someone's political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be,' the singer said in a statement to Reuters.

'My heart breaks every time I hear about the innocent lives that are lost in this region and the violence that is so often perpetuated to suit the political goals of people who benefit from this ancient conflict. I hope and pray that we will soon break free from this terrible cycle of destruction and create anew path towards peace.'

From RTE Via Yahoo! News


Madonna, on Eurovision, says she won't bow 'to suit someone's political agenda'

Pop superstar Madonna on Tuesday explained her decision to perform at the Eurovision Song Contest in Israel this week, saying that she will always speak up to defend human rights and hopes to see 'a new path toward peace.'

Madonna will make a guest appearance on Saturday during the Eurovision finals in Tel Aviv. The venue has prompted calls for a boycott by pro-Palestinian activists who want companies, performers and governments to disengage from Israel.

The popular Eurovision competition features musicians from more than 40 nations and was watched last year by some 189 million viewers in around 50 European countries.

In her first comment on her decision to sing at the event, Madonna said she was a supporter of all human rights.

'I’ll never stop playing music to suit someone’s political agenda nor will I stop speaking out against violations of human rights wherever in the world they may be,' the singer said in a statement to Reuters.

'My heart breaks every time I hear about the innocent lives that are lost in this region and the violence that is so often perpetuated to suit the political goals of people who benefit from this ancient conflict. I hope and pray that we will soon break free from this terrible cycle of destruction and create a new path towards peace,' she added.

Israel is hosting the Eurovision contest after local singer Netta Barzilai won last year. The winning country customarily hosts the following year.

The singer’s Ray of Light foundation, which promotes social justice and women’s empowerment worldwide, supports a number of Palestinian projects.

They include funding teachers’ salaries at schools in the Gaza Strip through the United Nations Palestinian Refugee Agency UNRWA and micro loans to female farmers through the Palestine Fair Trade Association. The foundation also supports Americans for Peace Now, which campaigns for a diplomatic solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israel has launched a PR campaign to counter calls for a boycott of the Eurovision contest by the international Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement. Security has been tight in Tel Aviv amid fears that activists may seek to disrupt the competition.

From Reuters


How augmented reality put five Madonnas on stage at once

At Wednesday's Billboard Music Awards, Madonna performed her latest single, 'Medellín', with Latin singer Maluma. However, they (and their flesh-and-blood dancers) weren't alone on the Las Vegas stage. Several virtual versions of the pop icon joined them: a secret agent, a musician, a cha-cha instructor and a bride. Augmented reality brought Madonna's personas to life with the help of volumetric capture - essentially 3D video - and Unreal Engine.

The avatars (not holograms, so they weren't visible to the naked eye) wove in and out of the inventive performance, bursting into butterflies and puffs of smoke. There were several environmental effects that livened up the show, including digital rain, clouds, greenery and splashes of color, which married with the physical side in an attempt to tell a cohesive story. Madonna has reinvented herself countless times over her storied career, so it's perhaps little surprise that she tried something like this.

Jamie King, Madonna's long-time creative director, said he was looking for something special for the BBMAs. 'After meeting with [Madonna's manager] Guy Oseary, we settled on the idea of incorporating augmented reality into the performance,' he told Engadget. 'I wanted to explore a way to involve her Madame X personas into the performance as well as the possibility of the real Madonna actually being able to perform with [them].'

The team brought the concept to a new creative AR company called Sequin, which took on the challenge of piecing the performance together. While it was the first time Madonna and Maluma performed the song live, it also marked the first project for Sequin.

While you might not recognize the name, you'll probably be familiar with the work of co-founders Lawrence Jones and Robert DeFranco. At The Future Group, their projects included those dramatic flooding visualizations for The Weather Channel, an AR-enhanced performance by K/DA at last year's League of Legends World Championship Finals and effects for this year's Super Bowl, for which they were nominated for an Emmy.

Jones, who oversees creative, production and technology development at Sequin, believes it was the first time there's been a broadcast AR performance using volumetric capture, which he called "the next revolution" of the medium. 'What's new about this is that it's a completely choreographed performance where Madonna and Maluma are dancing with four digital versions of Madonna in perfect choreography,' he told Engadget in an interview.

The show was something of a global affair. The volumetric capture process took place at a studio in London, while a Canadian company created the digital assets and environments in Unreal Engine for Sequin to pull together.

To read the rest of the article visit: uk.news.yahoo.com


Behind Madonna's Showstopping 'Madame X' Pirate Performance Look at 2019 BBMAs

The 60-year-old pop star wore a flouncy black-and-white polka-dot and lace Erdem dress accessorized with a riding crop and her new signature glittery red 'X' pirate eye patch.

At the Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas on Wednesday (May 1), Madonna continued the kickoff of a new chapter in her career with her first live performance (alongside Colombian singer Maluma) of 'Medellin,' from her forthcoming Madame X album, set to release on June 14.

No surprise that there were plenty of bells and whistles, including computer-generated images of herself in the chameleon-like range of styles from her new fashion-forward video of the first track from her 14th studio albu, which dropped last Wednesday at a world premiere hosted by MTV.

The Queen of Pop's commanding new aesthetic is one part dominatrix and another part sultry pirate, complete with a riding crop, fishnet stockings, gloves and a signature eye patch.

Stylist and i-D fashion editor Ib Kamara, with Eyob Yohannes on board as styling consultant, created the look that taps into Madonna's alter-ego 'Madame X,' a name given to her at age 19 by Martha Graham of the famed contemporary dance studio in New York.

Graham was known for wearing gloves, and Madonna repeated them throughout her video, as she did at the BBMAs, donning black fishnet gloves with bold "M" and 'X' diamond knuckle rings worn over the top, paired with a flouncy black-and-white polka-dot and glittery black lace Erdem dress. Her Art Deco platinum and diamond drop earrings were from Gioielleria Pennisi.

Front and center was her new trademark Madame X fashion accessory - a style-wise black leather pirate eye patch with a red X made of Swarovski crystals by Gregory Kara, who made a series of eye patches for the video and pre-drop interview (also in solid black, solid red, and white embellished with custom safety pins by Gareth Wrighton). There is also a branded version sold with her tour merchandise that lets fans imitate the trend.

Madonna's singing-and-dancing partner Maluma, styled by Julian Rios, coordinated for their cha-cha-chas in a sleek all-black look--a custom button-front shirt with matching trousers paired with red suspenders and tasseled red arm bands.

From Billboard.com / The Hollywood Reporter


Madonna / Maluma / Medellin #BBMAs


Madonna to perform at Eurovision song contest in Israel

Madonna will perform two songs during the interval at next month’s Eurovision Song Contest. Organisers for the event, to be held in Tel Aviv on 18 May, told the BBC 'no final decisions have been made, or agreements signed', but Madonna’s press team are said to have confirmed the news.

Facebook pages for Live Nation Israel and Bluestone Entertainment, a company co-owned by Madonna’s manager, Guy Oseary, also announced the news on Monday. Their posts stated that the star would perform two songs at the contest, to a global audience of 180 million viewers, including a new song from her forthcoming album.

The performance is expected to cost around £765,000, financed by an Israeli-Canadian billionaire, Sylvan Adams, who has funded large events and concerts to support Israel amid movements for artists to boycott the country. Adams told the Jerusalem Post that the concert would improve Israel’s global image.

The BDS Movement has not responded directly to Madonna’s prospective appearance at Eurovision in Israel. It has previously called for a boycott of the festival, stating: 'Israel is shamelessly using Eurovision as part of its official Brand Israel strategy, which presents ‘Israel’s prettier face’ to whitewash and distract attention from its war crimes against Palestinians.'

British cultural figures including Vivienne Westwood, Peter Gabriel and Mike Leigh have signed a letter calling on the BBC to cancel coverage of this year’s Eurovision song contest because it is taking place in Israel.

Madonna is expected to release her 14th album this summer. She has been teasing new music online, including a collaboration with the Lisbon group Orquestra Batukadeiras, and was recently spotted filming a music video in Portugal.

From The Guardian Via Yahoo! News


Madonna ‘set to headline Glastonbury 2019 for the first time’

Glastonbury might not be happening this year, as the farm needs a break from all of its festival goers. But that hasn’t stopped organisers Michael and Emily Eavis from plotting its grand return - and it sounds like the Queen of Pop might just be making an appearance. That’s right - as it stand Madonna is reportedly favourite to headline the legendary festival in 2019. Talking to The Sun’s Bizarre column and insider revealed: ‘Preparations are already well under way after they’ve taken this year off, and Michael and his ­daughter Emily Eavis want to make it better than ever.

‘They have always been massive fans of Madonna and know she would put on an unforgettable show.’ It would be the first time Madge has ever performed at the festival and could be seen throwing out some of her classic hits on the world famous Pyramid Stage. The source added that the pair wanted to get a female artists to show their ‘diversity’ after they were inundated with backlash for not putting many women on the bill last year.

They said: ‘It was really important that they had a diverse line-up for the 2019 festival after criticism of previous ones. And with this being a fallow year they want to secure a really big name to drive ticket sales.’ It’s not the first time Madonna has been wanted to headline the show, as in 2000 Michael spoke about how he wanted to bag the Like A Virgin songstress after he was impressed with Courtney Love’s band Hole in 1999. At the time he said: ‘I would like to get Madonna, I tell you that, especially with her William Orbit [Madonna’s producer] connections.

From Metro.co.uk


Madonna Performs Acoustic Set at NYC Park to Support Clinton

The singer held an impromptu performance at New York City’s Washington Square Park on Monday night, just one day before the election. Madonna, who first announced the intimate acoustic concert on social media Friday, was surrounded by hundreds of fans as she strummed her guitar next to 11-year-old son David and her guitarist Monte Pittman.

During the 30-minute gig, the 58-year-old Madge sung her hits like 'Like a Prayer,' 'Don’t Tell Me,' 'Express Yourself' and 'Rebel Heart' along with an emotional cover of John Lennon’s 'Imagine.'

In addition to her five-song set list, Madonna delivered a speech as to why she’s supporting the Democratic nominee.

'This is a concert about unifying us, and it’s about keeping America great, not making America great,' she told the crowd. 'This is a concert about peace, and we are trying to elect - we are going to elect - a president that is going to keep America the great country that it is and has the potential to be.'

While Madonna was in N.Y.C., Clinton was in Philadelphia for a rally at Independence Hall attended by President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi, daughter Chelsea Clinton and husband, former President Bill Clinton.

From US Weekly


Madonna, Kesha, Dion rule the stage at emotional Billboard Awards

Madonna paid tribute to Prince, Kesha earned a standing ovation for her stirring rendition of 'It Ain't Me, Babe' honoring Bob Dylan, and Celine Dion dedicated her Icon award to her late husband at Sunday night's emotion-packed Billboard Music Awards.

The three-hour live telecast from Las Vegas stuck to its tradition of a performance-heavy annual show featuring top recording stars in spectacular production numbers.

Britney Spears kicked things off, dazzling in a daring red outfit for a medley of her hits.

Canadian singer The Weeknd dedicated the first award to Prince, the Grammy-winning pop superstar best known for such hits as 'Purple Rain' and 'Let's Go Crazy,' who died at his Minnesota home in April aged 57.

'I want to dedicate this award to the late great Prince,' The Weeknd (real name Abel Tesfaye), said in accepting the Top Hot 100 Artist award.

Madonna ended the show with a Prince tribute that included 'Nothing Compares 2 U,' before she was joined by Stevie Wonder for 'Purple Rain' as the audience rose to its feet, arms gently swaying above their heads and singing along.

From Reuters Via Yahoo! News


Madonna Holds Record for Highest-Grossing Touring Solo Artist in Billboard Boxscore History

Following the close of Madonna's critically acclaimed Rebel Heart Tour this past Sunday night in Sydney, Australia, Madonna is the Top Grossing Touring Solo Artist in the history of Billboard Boxscore with over $1.31 billion in ticket sales sold over the course of her career.

Madonna is also the third top grossing touring act (behind The Rolling Stones and U2) since tracking began in 1990. Produced by Live Nation Global Touring, the Rebel Heart Tour kicked off on September 9th, 2015 in Montreal and visited arenas in 55 cities on four continents over seven months. Madonna performed 82 shows, plus a special fan club show in Melbourne. It grossed $169.8 Million with 1,045,479 in attendance.

Madonna visited several cities for the first time ever, including Bangkok, Hong Kong, Macau, Manila, Auckland, Taipei, Nashville, Omaha, and Louisville. She also performed multiple shows in several cities, including three shows apiece in New York, Turin, and Melbourne. She played two shows in Miami, Berlin, Barcelona, London, Paris, Tokyo, and Sydney, to name a few.

The Rebel Heart Tour also attracted raves for the Material Girl, with the New York Times calling her 'unstoppable' and Rolling Stone remarking that 'there's nobody else near her throne.' Entertainment Weekly plain and simply summed it up proclaiming: 'Madonna reigns.'

The Rebel Heart Tour was directed by Jamie King with musical direction by Kevin Antunes (the band's keyboardist Ric'key Pageot, drummer Brian Frasier-Moore, guitarist Monte Pittman, and background vocalists Kiley Dean and Nicki Richards), lead choreography by Megan Lawson, hair by Andy LeCompte, makeup by Aaron Henrikson, and costume design by Arianne Phillips.

Beloved for her boundary-pushing fashion, Madonna and Phillips, whose original designs are also in the show, collaborated with Alessandro Michele for Gucci, Alexander Wang, Fausto Puglisi, Jeremy Scott for Moschino, Nicolas Jebran, Miu Miu, Prada and Swarovski to create the sumptuous costumes.

The final two shows of the tour in Sydney were filmed for an upcoming release.

From PR Marketwired Press Release


Tears Of A Clown: Setlist

Madonna has just finished (as of 02:50 am on Friday morning) her intimate one-off 'Tears Of A Clown' show in Melbourne. The show was recorded and is going to be included in a Rebel Heart Tour DVD. Here is the setlist:

Send In The Clowns (Cover)
Drowned World/Substitute For Love
X-Static Process
Between The Bars (Cover)
Nobody's Perfect
Easy Ride
Intervention (Dedicated to Rocco)
I'm So Stupid
Paradise (Not For Me)
Joan of Arc
Don't Tell Me
Mer Girl
Borderline
Take A Bow
Holiday


Madonna's Tears Of A Clown intimate concert for fans

The rain has been pelting down on Madonna’s most diehard fans, who have waited 23 years for her to visit. Now they have to wait no more.

The Queen of Pop has hit the stage in an extravagant clown outfit, with a billowing yellow top and pink and white striped socks. The 57-year-old opened her Tears of a Clown show with a series of jokes before performing Drowned World/Substitute for Love from her 1998 album Ray of Light.

The mum-of-four also rode a tiny tricycle around the stage at The Forum in Melbourne to the delight of superfans.

An emotional Madonna later surprised fans by dedicating her song Intervention to her teenage son Rocco who refuses to move back to New York to live with her.

The doors were meant to open at 8.30pm but Guy Oseary then told the soaking fans, many who had camped overnight at the Forum theatre in Melbourne since Monday, that the doors would not be open before 10.30pm and the pop singer would most likely not be on stage before 11.30pm.

Fans said online the delay was because Madonna was rehearsing the show up until the last minute.

Superfans, wearing Madonna T-shirts, passed the time performing singalongs in the street before the doors finally opened around midnight.

Concertgoers have flown in from around Australia and the world - including a couple from Germany - to see the Queen of Pop. Queues stretched up Hosier Lane into Flinders Lane.

The curfew for the venue is 2am.

The fans at the intimate Forum could only win tickets via Madonna’s fan club or through Rebel Heart tour sponsor Telstra. Names have been printed on tickets to stop the money-can’t-buy tickets being scalped.

Report by Cameron Adams / news.com.au


Drake: 'Don't misinterpret my shock!'

Madonna can’t catch a break. Even after surprising Drake during his Coachella set on Sunday night with a full-mouth kiss, some people couldn’t help taking shots at her.

'What the f–k just happened?' the MC asked after the smooch, seemingly wiping his mouth awkwardly following the unexpected face attack. The Internet asked the same thing, with some comparing Madonna, 56, to a Dementor and other soul-suckers.

But guess what? Madonna isn’t bothered by your hate and Drake feels blessed. On Monday, she responded with a simple truism about her decades of headline-grabbing stunts. 'If you don't like me and still watch everything I do, Bitch you're a fan'.

And Drizzy posted a snap of the kiss with the caption, 'moments to write home about.'

Followed by another one that summed up his feelings even better. 'Don’t misinterpret my shock!! I got to make out with the queen Madonna and I feel 100 about that forever. Thank you @madonna.'

From MTV.co.uk


Madonna Gives a Surprise Performance at Coachella!

Madonna is 'Living for Love,' all right. Last month, she revealed to Us Weekly, 'The lifelong ambition I still want to fulfill is to go on a dream date with Drake - and only kiss him.' The 56-year-old pop singer turned her fantasy into a reality when she made a cameo during the 28-year-old rapper's Coachella set Sunday and they swapped spit onstage.

It started out innocently enough. Drake introduced his special surprise guest by performing 'Madonna,' a track off his latest album, If You're Reading This It's Too Late. That was Madonna's cue to make her big entrance, of course. She wore a gold grill and black tee emblazoned with 'Big as Madonna,' a line from Drake's song, on her chest. Madonna performed two of her hits, 'Human Nature' and 'Hung Up'

That's when Madonna went in for the kill.

With Drake sitting in a chair, Madonna hovered over him and stuck her tongue down his throat. He rolled with it as she caressed his chest, but when he tried to play with her hair, she pushed his hand away. Cameras caught Drake wiping his mouth and telling the crowd, 'Oh, s--t! What the f--k just happened?'

Madonna then shouted, 'I'm Madonna, bitch!' and left the stage.

The 'Ghosttown' singer made sure to share the makeout moment with her Instagram followers. 'No caption necessary ..........@coachella. #bestnight #bigasmadonna #bitchimmadonna,' Madonna wrote. She also Instagrammed Drake's reaction, writing, 'Dont touch the hair! Lol,' but later deleted the photo.

From uk.eonline.com/madonna-gives-a-surprise-performance-at-coachella


Madonna to introduce Pussy Riot at Amnesty concert

Pop icon Madonna said Wednesday she will introduce to the stage two formerly jailed members of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot when they appear at an Amnesty International concert in New York next week, hailing the pair as 'fellow freedom fighters.'

Maria Alyokhina, 25, and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 24, will speak at the concert organized by the human rights group on February 5 during their first trip to New York since being granted amnesty in December by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

They became international were symbols of human rights campaigners after being jailed in Russia for nearly two years.

'I am honored to introduce my fellow freedom fighters Masha and Nadya from Pussy Riot. I have admired their courage and have long supported their commitment and the sacrifices they have made in the name of free of expression and human rights,' Madonna said in a statement after posting the news on her Facebook page.

Amnesty announced that the pair, who were convicted in 2012 of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred after storming Moscow's biggest cathedral and beseeching the Virgin Mary to rid Russia of Putin, would attend the concert earlier this month. A third Pussy Riot member, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was freed when a judge suspended her sentence on appeal.

American alternative rock group Imagine Dragons, the Flaming Lips and R&B singer Lauryn Hill will perform at the Bringing Human Rights Home concert at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The event will resume a global concert series that Nobel Peace Prize-winning Amnesty International began 25 years ago, featuring rock greats such as U2, Bruce Springsteen, Sting and Lou Reed.

From Reuters Via Yahoo! News


Madonna to perform with Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

Madonna will perform with Macklemore & Ryan Lewis at the Grammy Awards.

The 'Hung Up' singer is set to join the rap duo on stage at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles at the 56th annual ceremony on Sunday (26.01.14) for their hit 'Same Love.'

A source told UsMagazine.com that the 55-year-old star is looking forward to collaborating with 30-year-old Ben Haggerty, better known as Macklemore, and his producer Ryan, 25, on the track, which is an anthem for same sex marriage and gay rights.

The Seattle, Washington natives have had a very successful year and are nominated for seven awards, including Album of the Year for 'The Heist,' Best New Artist and Song of the Year for 'Same Love.'

Madonna - who has previously won seven Grammy awards - last performed at the annual event in 2006.

The 56th annual Grammy Awards will be hosted by LL Cool J and broadcast live on the CBS network in the US from the Staples Centre in Los Angeles.

From contactmusic.com


Madonna Confirmed For GRAMMYs Performance

The GRAMMY Awards released what is (presumably) its final additions to its awe-inspiring lineup of performers, with Madonna at the top of that list. The singer was reported late last week to be a surprise performer at Sunday's ceremony, and Madge was officially confirmed in a press release on Friday (Jan. 24).

Also added to the GRAMMYs lineup: Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong and country star Miranda Lambert, who will perform a special tribute to Phil Everly, who passed away earlier this month; Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue; and rapper Juicy J, who will likely join Katy Perry onstage to perform their Top 5 hit 'Dark Horse.'

Madonna's last performance at the GRAMMYs came in 2006, when she performed her hit 'Hung Up' alongside Gorillaz. She has won seven GRAMMY Awards over the course of her illustrious career.

Previously announced GRAMMY performers include Daft Punk, with Nile Rodgers, Pharrell Williams and Stevie Wonder; Lorde; Sara Bareilles with Carole King; Macklemore & Ryan Lewis; Kendrick Lamar and Imagine Dragons; Taylor Swift; and many, many others. LL Cool J will return as host of the ceremony, which will take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

From Billboard.com


Madonna To Play Amnesty International Concert?

Earlier this week it was announced that the massive Amnesty International concert at Barclays Center on February 5th will feature two members of Pussy Riot, who were just released from Russian prison camps last month. The concert is a return to the Amnesty concerts of the 1980s and '90s (they stopped in 1998), and in that spirit some legendary talent has been expected to return with it - we now have it on good authority that Madonna has been confirmed to play at the show.

She also issued this call to action at the time: 'I protest the conviction and sentencing of Pussy Riot to a penal colony for two years for a 40 second performance extolling their political opinions. Even if one disagrees with the location or how they chose to express themselves, the sentence is too harsh and in fact is inhumane. I call on all those who love freedom to condemn this unjust punishment. I urge artists around the world to speak up in protest against this travesty. They've spent enough time in jail. I call on ALL of Russia to let Pussy Riot go free.'

Organizers have promised big announcements up until the date of the show, so expect more of these surprises in the next week.

From gothamist.com - thanks to Nikki


Madonna and Tutu team up for women at London charity gig

Singers Beyonce and Madonna, activist Gloria Steinem and Bishop Desmond Tutu will be among big names reaching out to a billion people from a pop concert in London on Saturday with a message of empowerment for women across the planet.
The 'Sound of Change Live' gig headlined by Beyonce, Florence + the Machine and Jennifer Lopez will be broadcast live from Twickenham sports stadium to 150 countries, and on primetime TV in the United States the following day, organisers said on Tuesday.
The four-hour concert could fund at least 120 projects supporting women and girls in more than 70 nations, if all the tickets are sold, they said.
Organised by the Chime for Change campaign, started by Italian fashion house Gucci, every ticket buyer will be able to choose which project their ticket will fund in what the campaign said was a world first for such a venture.
Madonna will be a presenter at the gig alongside other musicians, public figures, activists, film directors and actors including Indian stars Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan.
'Sixty percent of the children in the world not in school are girls,' Madonna said. 'Two-thirds of the world's illiterate are women. I do not accept this. We need to change this and we will change this.'
In addition to performances and collaborations from artists, the concert, which starts at 1700 GMT, will serve as a platform to broadcast inspirational and provocative films and stories highlighting women's issues around the world.

From Reuters Via Yahoo! News


Madonna Poked Fun At Redfoo's Weakness

Madonna poked fun at LMFAO star Stefan 'Redfoo' Gordy during their Super Bowl rehearsals - because he struggled to lift the pop superstar.
The Sexy and I Know It hitmaker and bandmate Sky Blu joined Madonna onstage at the Super Bowl half-time show in Indianapolis earlier this month and their performance was flawless - but he admits he almost let the Material Girl down during one sequence.
He tells Rolling Stone, 'In rehearsal, she said, 'If you were working out more, you could life me a little easier'. Her biceps were way more cut up than mine. She was like, 'Get a jump rope!''

From contactmusic.com


Holy mackerel! Super Bowl show from the stands

Take a look at this video clip showing the fantastic video floor effects (that did not show up on TV) and running commentary from a very excited Dad (we think) and two 12 year olds watching Madonna live for the first time!

It is an interesting and funny way to watch the show - the effect during Like A Prayer when the football pitch seems to be pulled away to reveal a starry universe and the audience turn on their torches is wonderful!

Thanks to Anna-Clare and Rachel


Madonna Controlled Every Aspect of Nicki's Super Bowl Look

Madonna always has been - and always will be! - the H.B.I.C.
Before Nicki Minaj joined her onstage during Super Bowl XLVI on February 5, the 53-year-old Material Girl personally approved every aspect of the rapper's look.
'Madonna was the first person in history who was able to make me change my wig,' Minaj, 29, said on Ryan Seacrest's KIIS-FM radio show Monday. 'I had some choices in terms of color, but...she has a way with words.'
'She knows how to word things so that you don't feel uncomfortable,' the hip-hop star explained. 'I went through four color changes on my wig for the Super Bowl. We got the platinum blonde and she smiled. Once she smiled, I was like, 'Thank you, Jesus!' I couldn't take it anymore.'
The 'Give Me All Your Luvin'' legend was also the first person to convince Minaj to try red lipstick. 'It's so funny because when I did it, I wound up loving it. I told her, 'I'm so glad I trusted you. You're amazing! You're the queen, and everybody has to bow down.''
'She knows what she wants,' Minaj said in defense of Madonna. 'When you see her vision, it's like, 'Oh, OK. Now I get it.'
To be included in such a monumental performance was life-changing for the rapper. 'Why would she include me in such a special moment? It's such a special moment for her,' Minaj said. 'I had to give my all.'

From www.usmagazine.com


Madonna Super Bowl Gig A 'No-Brainer' For Cee Lo

When Madonna calls, you answer.
The Queen of Pop rang up Cee Lo Green several months back about performing 'Like a Prayer' during the Super Bowl halftime show, and he didn't give it a second thought.
'I was asked - cordially invited - by Madonna to be a part of it and, of course, very eagerly obliged. So it was basically as simple as that,' he told MTV News late Monday about the eye-catching gig, which included a dazzling light show, loads of dancers and fellow guests LMFAO, Nicki Minaj and M.I.A.
'It was kind of like a no-brainer. Working with Madonna is a very simple process,' he added. 'She's a very hard worker, quite the perfectionist, and we worked awfully hard for that entire 12-minute performance to be as close to perfection as possible.'
With 100 million-plus viewers tuning in to the game and halftime show, it was no doubt the biggest audience Cee Lo and company had ever performed in front of. But everyone was so ready for anything that there was very little room for error or time to be nervous, Cee Lo told us.
'In our line of business and at this point of my career, I think I'm as prepared as you can be,' he said. 'I'm most certainly poised to be in that place, in this place. It's where we rehearsed, so well in advance, that it becomes a second nature.'
Cee Lo cited the professionalism of Madge and the entire crew for the performance going off without a hitch. 'The technicalities of it are just amazing,' he said. '[It was] such a large crew that really helped. Without their tenacity and their know-how, it could not be done. It would be impossible. So I must commend the entire crew. Technically it takes an entire team to make something like that a success.'
Fashion also played a big part in the performance. While Madonna was sporting looks by Givenchy, Cee Lo's black, sequined choir robe was a design all his own.
'They tease and they call me 'Reverend Green' and 'Preacher Green,' so I had a couple of those robes made just for fun,' he explained. 'I mean, you know me, I'm still the same, you know, known for my sense of style, so on and so forth. And when the nature of the performance was discussed and they were saying, 'We're gonna do 'Like a Prayer' and everyone will be in robes,' and they were looking for my measurements to see if they were going to have to make me one, and I was like, 'What do you mean? I have my own already!' So she was pretty touched by that. I brought a lot of myself.'

From MTV.com


Madonna was the real Super Bowl's Champion!

Let’s put aside our Patriots hangover and agree that something good came out of last night’s game: The big winner out of the Super Bowl was Madonna.
There was, after all, some sniggering before the game about how She Of The Cone Bras of Yore was going to comport herself on stage, at the ripe age of 53. We grant far more leeway to aging male rockers, mostly laugh when Steven Tyler gawks at 'American Idol' contestants who are young enough to be his granddaughters. We’re more skeptical when female stars - dancers and erstwhile sex symbols - want to keep doing what they’ve always done.
But in her halftime show, Madge didn’t comport herself like a relic trying to act 30 years younger than she is. She paid tribute to her oldies. (Yes, gulp, oldies. 'Open Your Heart' was released in 1986.) She presented some new material (not as good as 'Like a Prayer,' but that’s always the way). She danced precisely as well as she needed to. She looked like she was having a ball.
I’m already looking forward to Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl appearance in 2052. In the meantime, Madonna has shown younger fans where Gaga got her ideas; she’s the original model for the female pop star as brilliant master of self-invention. And, in her elder-stateswoman role, she’s sent a message on behalf of women everywhere. Aging gracefully can, when required, involve doing cartwheels.

From The Boston Globe / Joanna Weiss - thanks to Micheal