The Queen of Pop has embarked on a lot of world tours over the years.
Madonna is one of the most memorable performers in pop music history. Her tours have set the standard for the female artists who followed her. Madonna’s “Blond Ambition Tour” offered a level of theatricality not previously seen in pop concerts. She has always incorporated that latest technology and most diverse choreography into her shows.
With rumors that Madonna might be embarking on another tour this year, let’s take a look back at her previous tours. Which one grossed the most money? Let’s find out.
11/11 The Virgin Tour - $5,875,575
In 1985, Madonna-mania was in full swing. Girls everywhere wanted to dress like her, her songs shot to the top of the charts, and her videos were in regular rotation on MTV. She also received criticism from some in the media who said her voice sounded like “Minnie Mouse on helium.” Despite this, Madonna embarked on her first tour and showed the world her talent as a performer. It was the first sign of her rising stardom and provided audiences with a mere taste of what was to come.
10/11 Who's That Girl Tour - $32,368,629
This tour is the perfect look at how Madonna dominated the 80s. In 1987, her film and its soundtrack Who’s That Girl was released. She also released her third album “True Blue,” the year prior. While the film bombed, the soundtrack did well and Madonna embarked on this tour to support all three projects. She performed her biggest hits to stadiums around the world for the first time. Madonna also featured a young dancer, Chris Finch, in the show. Finch performed the opening number with Madonna.
9/11 Madame X Tour - $51,535,128
Madonna’s “Madame X Tour” saw her performing in small theaters for the first time. Many fans had not seen her in such a small setting since her very first tour in 1985. Madonna promised a show that would deliver intimacy between her and the audience. Unfortunately, the show was marked by late starts and Madonna’s unapologetic attitude towards her tardiness turned off many fans. There were also many shows that got canceled, some hours before the shows were set to begin, due to Madonna’s knee injury.
8/11 Blond Ambition Tour - $58,303,508
In 1990, Madonna was on top of the world. She had a big hit with “Vogue,” starred in the film Dick Tracy, and embarked on this tour. She worked with choreographer Vincent Patterson and fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier. This show featured the iconic cone bra which has become one of Madonna’s most recognizable looks. The final show in Nice, France was filmed for HBO and the documentary Madonna: Truth or Dare chronicles the tour.
7/11 Drowned World Tour - $74,051,171
Following “The Girlie Show Tour” in 1993, Madonna spent the next several years away from touring. During this time, she released three albums, had two kids, and did several movies. One of those movies, Evita, won her a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy. In 2001, Madonna embarked on this tour and gave audiences a look at how she evolved in recent years. Due to the large amount of new material released since her last tour, this show didn’t include as much of her past hits.
6/11 The Girlie Show Tour - $78,820,597
After receiving public backlash over her “Erotica” album and “Sex” book, Madonna embarked on a world tour in 1993. This tour was shorter by Madonna’s standards and didn’t include a lot of American dates. This is possibly due to the negative media attention she was receiving in the country at the time. Madonna did travel to many countries where she never performed before, including Israel and Australia. The latter of which was filmed for an HBO special.
5/11 Re-Invention Tour - $124,780,787
When Madonna released her “American Life” album in 2003, it received mixed to negative reception from the public. It was the first Madonna album not to have a big hit song. When she went on tour the following year, Madonna decided to make up for that by arranging a set list comprised of her biggest hits. Many fans were surprised to see these songs being performed, since it seemed like Madonna was trying to put her past hits behind her.
4/11 Rebel Heart Tour - $169,804,336
Madonna was still in the headlines during this tour, but this time it wasn’t because of the show’s content. It had to do with Madonna’s relationship with her son Rocco and ex-husband Guy Ritchie, with whom she was in a custody battle during this tour. Madonna’s sadness over the situation was expressed on several dates, including an intimate show in Australia she called “Tears of a Clown.”
3/11 Confessions Tour - $194,754,447
Madonna’s “Confessions on a Dance Floor” album saw her return to the dance floor for the first time in years. This party extended to the tour, which saw her performing her new tracks while re-interpreting old ones. She performed “Like a Virgin” as pictures of her x-ray from her horse injury flashed on the screen. She also performed a completely new version of “Erotica” that fans still go wild over. Madonna also merged the classic “Disco Inferno” with her own hit “Music.”
2/11 MDNA Tour - $305,158,362
When Madonna released her album “MDNA” it was the first original Madonna album in four years. Fans were understandably excited when she embarked on this tour to support the album. She put together a show that referenced her past work, while interpreting it in a new way. Madonna also found herself at the center of many controversies while on this tour. From her nudity on stage to her use of fake guns, Madonna kept herself in the headlines during this tour.
1/11 Sticky & Sweet Tour - $407,713,266
When Madonna embarked on her “Sticky & Sweet Tour” in 2008, she was going through a divorce from then-husband Guy Ritchie. Her tour was originally supposed to end in December that year, but an additional leg was added in 2009. This particular leg saw Madonna performing in places she was visiting for the first time. There were also guest appearances from Justin Timberlake, Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, and Britney Spears during this tour.