Opening night of Pop Queen’s world tour.
A WOMAN dressed in leather murdering men with a Kalashnikov rifle in the Paradise Motel sounds more like a Quentin Tarantino film than a pop concert.
But this is the opening night of a Madonna world tour — controversy isn’t just expected, it’s what the punters pay handsomely for.
In the middle of her gig she even made an impassioned plea for everyone to work for peace in the Middle East and around the world.
After 30 years setting the bar for her rivals, the Queen Mother of Pop has proved yet again that Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Beyonce, Britney and Katy Perry still have their work cut out to match the greatest female pop star in music history.
MDNA — her play on words for the drug MDMA — is an assault on the senses from the off, featuring a great mix of the classic hits, new material and the standard world-class choreography.
It’s also the first time she has involved her kids, Rocco Ritchie and Lola Leon, in the full production.
Rocco is a star of the show, cropping up in five numbers break-dancing and singing — including with a gospel choir for Like A Prayer.
The tour rumbles on until December so his old man Guy might be having a word about keeping focus on the school books.
Rocco is 12 in August but is starring in a show that could easily, in parts, earn a 15 rating. During the gig, he sees his mum stripped nearly naked and tied up in a corset by a dancer, then dragged around the floor.
His older sister Lola was even closer to the sex-shop clobber, working backstage in the wardrobe department at Thursday’s show. It must be quite an education with the bondage outfits, chains and lingerie.
The show kicks off with a religious theme — dancers dressed like Vatican guards swinging a giant incense canister around the stage in front of a huge crucifix.
The crowd erupted as Madonna emerged on stage in a curtained prayer room, suspended on a wire, as dance hit Girls Gone Wild from her latest album kicks in.
Guns play a prominent part in the dark opening. One of her rarer tracks, Revolver, is brutal stuff, with dancers taking aim at the crowd while images of shattered skull, blood and brain splash across screens.
The Paradise Motel scene launches with wailing sirens as Madonna slurps Jack Daniel’s in a grotty room, before she kills intruders in a vicious fight. It’s Kill Bill meets Pulp Fiction. Gripping stuff.
I’ve seen Madonna doing her Re-invention tour, Confessions, Hard Candy and Sticky & Sweet — this one is up there as the best. In the earlier gigs I saw her get the electric chair and introduce Parkour and The Percolator dance move to the world.
This time, her new craze is Slacklining, a cross between tight-rope walking and trampolining. She gives it a spin herself, while singing live.
Lil Wayne, dressed as a bishop, and Nicki Minaj, dressed as a nun, have cameo roles on giant video screens. Minaj shouts: “There’s only one Queen and that’s Madonna.”
A few billion people might disagree on Monday, pal.
Her Madgesty has a subtle dig at Lady GaGa in a mash-up of Express Yourself and Born This Way.
She even gives a cheeky flash of her underpants, while dressed as a majorette, poking fun at Miss Germanotta’s love for revealing her undercarriage.There’s a clever trick in the production for new track Turn Up The Radio.
The giant screens flash back through footage of Madonna’s career as she tries to find the right frequency for the song — earning some of the biggest cheers of the night.
On the Confessions tour, she had a thing for gypsy rockers Gogol Bordello. This time she has Spain’s Basque trio Kalakan performing. Some of the fans around me used it as a chance for a toilet break.
It’s unusual to see a stripped-down version of any of her songs but she performs Like A Virgin lying on the floor singing with only a pianist for company on stage. But club anthems I’m Addicted and I’m A Sinner, from the new album, get things fired up again for the climax.
The chart icon has been hammered for charging a fortune for tickets but it’s well worth the money.
I’ve given her some stick for maybe flashing a bit too much flesh for a 53-year old — but she throws herself into the show like a teenager and is fitter than most people half her age.
There is no encore, possibly because she broke the 11pm curfew by 40 minutes and now faces a hefty fine from the authorities in Tel Aviv.
Not that Her Madgesty and her Kalashnikovs care — she’s just delivered another world-class show her fans will lap up.
THE pop queen’s boyfriend, Brahim Zaibat, is one of the lead dancers and performs a fair few steamy routines with her . . . organisers had to build a special tent backstage for the dancers to practise tightrope walking … the costumes are designed by Arianne Phillips, who did the outfits for Madge’s film W.E.
HER Madgesty played to 35,000 people on her opening night in Tel Aviv’s Ramat Gan Stadium. By the time she’s finished her MDNA world tour, she’ll have performed in front of more than two million… she is performing a total of 86 shows – 32 on the current leg, followed by 43 on her North America stint starting in August, and 11 in South America from November… the show is coming to the UK next month. The first gig is in Hyde Park on July 17, followed by Birmingham, Edinburgh and Dublin.
Source: The Sun