Today in Madonna History: September 16, 2017

On September 15 2017, Madonna spoke to Mark Savage (BBC) about how after a career of huge production shows, she’s thinking about a smaller scale residency style show in the future.

“I’ve done so many shows – world tours, stadiums, sports arenas, you name it – that I feel like I have to reinvent that now too. I like doing intimate shows and being able to talk directly to the audience. This is something I’m exploring right now: the idea of doing a show that doesn’t travel the world, but stays in one place and utilizes not only humour and the music in a more intimate setting but other people’s music, as well, and other entertainment. Kind of a revolving door of amazing, gifted, unique talent – dancers, musicians, singers, comedians, me, humour. I don’t know! Like, I’m trying to come up with all those ideas now.”

Here’s part of their interview:

Before we start, there’s one thing I need to know: Did your FedEx package ever arrive?

Ha ha! Yes, it has. FedEx is blaming customs, customs is blaming FedEx and we’ll never know what happened. But I have it now.

So, I saw the Rebel Heart tour when you were in London and the DVD does a really good job of capturing what it was like to be in the audience. How do you go about that?

I was there every step of the way, every day for months and months. It’s really hard to capture the true feeling of the excitement and the passion and the heat and the blood, sweat and tears. I’m pleased with the way it came out.

There’s a particularly touching sequence during True Blue, where everybody in the audience embraces each other.

I know, it’s a very sweet, emotional moment in the show. I didn’t expect it to be, but when I look back at the DVD it almost brings a tear to my eye because everyone seems so in love.

How do you put a show like this together? Where do you get the ideas?

Everything’s based around my song choice. So first, I go through my catalogue of songs with my band and I start working on things that excite me and inspire me in the moment. Some songs I’m sick of doing and I don’t want to do them. Other songs I say, “No, I did that on the last tour, I don’t want to do it again.”

So I try to rotate things and I also try to reflect my current mood and what I’ve been feeling, and what’s been inspiring me artistically or filmically, politically, philosophically. I try to put songs together in groups that have thematic connection, and then I try to tell a story. And then I do the visuals. It’s quite a process.

What are the songs you don’t want to do again?

Well, I tend to not want to do the songs I did on the tour before. That’s what I mean. So if I did Material Girl on the tour before, or Express Yourself on the tour before, then I’ll say, “OK, I did that for 88 shows. I can’t do it again.”

How do you keep a healthy balance between new songs and your back catalogue?

It’s just playing in rehearsal. It’s really hard for me, especially with my older songs, to do them with the original arrangement. Because 33 years later, after doing it for so long, you just have to reinvent things. Well, I do.

And it’s fun for me to take an ’80s pop song and turn it into a salsa song, or turn it into a samba, or make an uptempo song into a ballad.

The DVD also includes the Tears of a Clown show you did in Melbourne. Was that a one-off or a trial run for a different type of Madonna concert?

I like doing intimate shows and being able to talk directly to the audience; to play with them and use humour and pathos and truth, and share my life – and also make up stories. I like the freedom of it and I like the intimacy of it, and I would like to explore doing it more in the future.

Maybe a residency?

Yeah, a residency. If I look back at the Rebel Heart tour, my favourite part was really the last section where I got to just sit on the stage and play my ukulele and sing La Vie en Rose and talk to the audience. [It was] just more intimate. More audience participation and connecting to human beings – I feel I’m craving that more and more.

Did it feel like there was more room for improvisation in that section?

Yeah, I have freedom and I can make mistakes. That’s another thing I do in Tears of a Clown – if I start a song off wrong and I make a boo-boo, I just turn around and go “Stop! Let’s start again!”

When you’re doing a sports arena show, you’re linked up to video, you can’t stop. Once the train leaves the station, you have to keep going.

There’s a certain kind of adrenalin rush to that – but there’s no room for error. So I like the idea of mistakes and free-styling. Free-falling, really. It’s more exciting to me right now.

You can read the full interview here.

Today in Madonna History: September 15, 2017

On September 15 2017, Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour was released on DVD, blu-ray and double-CD.

Here is the official press release:

Madonna today released her long-awaited REBEL HEART TOUR concert film on a variety of formats. REBEL HEART TOUR was recorded around the world and features both live and behind the scenes material, as well as previously unreleased footage culminating with performances at the Sydney Qudos Bank Arena (formerly known as the Allphones Arena) in Australia in March of 2016.

REBEL HEART TOUR is nearly two hours long and features Madonna’s most recent hits from the Rebel Heart album, and some of the biggest classics of her career including stunning reinterpretations of old favourites, which were unique to the tour. Bonus features on the DVD, blu-ray and iTunes version are Like A Prayer and ‘An Excerpt From Tears Of A Clown’ – incredibly rare footage of Madonna’s one-off Melbourne theatre show, which was completely different to the Rebel Heart shows in both scale, content and production. Featuring music, art and mischief, the exclusive fan club show was a celebration of Madonna’s return to Australia after 23 years.

Eagle Vision are releasing the film on DVD and blu-ray (both with an exclusive 14-track highlights CD) and digital download. Also released is a 22-track double CD, which is also available on all digital music services. In addition to the physicaland digital formats, madonna.com have exclusive fan merchandise bundles.

MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR was co-directed by Danny B. Tull and Nathan Rissman, both of whom have worked extensively with Madonna on her feature films and tour movies.

The tracklist for MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR film and live concert album span all decades of the iconic superstar’s illustrious career, including songs from her chart-topping Rebel Heart album to classic fan favorites.

Produced by Live Nation Global Touring, the Rebel Heart Tour kicked off on September 9, 2015 in Montreal and visited arenas in 55 cities on four continents over seven months. Madonna performed 82 shows, plus the special Tears Of A Clown fan club show in Melbourne.

Today in Madonna History: June 20, 2017

On June 20 2017, the official press release for Madonna’s Rebel Heart Tour release was sent out to fans through the Official Madonna Fan Club, Icon:

MADONNA has announced that her record-breaking MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR will be released by Eagle Vision on September 15 on digital download, DVD and Blu-ray complete with bonus content, and an audio CD of highlights from her much-heralded tour.

The Material Girl will also release a live album featuring 22 songs from the Rebel Heart Tour, available on double CD and digital download.

The MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR film was recorded around the world and features both live and behind the scenes material, as well as previously unreleased footage culminating with performances at the Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney, Australia in March of 2016. MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR is co-directed by Danny Tull and Nathan Rissman, both of whom have worked extensively with Madonna on her feature films and tour movies. A version of the film previously debuted on Showtime in December 2016.

The tracklist for MADONNA: REBEL HEART TOUR film and live concert album span all decades of the iconic superstar’s illustrious career, including songs from her chart-topping Rebel Heart album to classic fan favorites. Of particular note to longtime fans will be the new interpretations of some of Madonna’s timeless hits.

Praise includes: Madonna is Unstoppable (New York Times); Doesn’t Miss a Beat (Washington Post); the Queen of Pop…an inspirational figure (LA Weekly); the ultimate professional (Entertainment Weekly); on fire (Rolling Stone); an authoritative diva far from the end of her reign (Time Out New York); the genre’s greatest icon (Boston Herald); immeasurable (Detroit News); Queen of the World (Willamette Week); bigger, if not better than ever (San Diego Union-Tribune).

Produced by Live Nation Global Touring, the Rebel Heart Tour kicked off on September 9, 2015 in Montreal and visited arenas in 55 cities on four continents over seven months. Madonna performed 82 shows, plus the special Tears Of A Clown fan club show in Melbourne. The tour grossed $169.8 Million with 1,045,479 in attendance, making her the top grossing touring female 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 fourth top grossing touring act since tracking began in 1990.

The Rebel Heart Tour was directed by Jamie King with musical direction by Kevin Antunes (with band 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.

Stay tuned for pre-order info coming soon!

Today in Madonna History: June 5, 2017

On June 5 2017, Madonna showed support to her friend Ariana Grande for organizing the One Love Manchester Benefit concert to raise money for the victims of the terrorist attack on her concert in May.

Congratulation to my brave and beautiful friend Ariana 🏅 for organizing the benefit concert in Manchester! Last night 🙏🏻. Gathering so many great artists and bringing everyone together in the spirit of ❤️ and Peace and not bowing down to F.E.A.R. Im so Proud of you! 💘💕and I would like to make a donation along with my manager Guy Oseary and encourage others to do the same!! 😂🎉💯♥️🙏🏻 We ♥️Manchester Www.Welovemcrcharity.org

We encourage all of our readers to make a donation for this great cause, thank you.

Today in Madonna History: April 25, 2017

On April 25 2017, Madonna responded to reports of a new biopic being produced by Universal:

“Nobody knows what I know and what I have seen. Only I can tell my story. Anyone else who tries is a charlatan and a fool looking for instant gratification without doing the work. This is a disease in our society.”

According to Variety, Universal had no comment, but had this to say about the biopic:

The studio won an auction Monday for Elyse Hollander’s “Blonde Ambition” screenplay about Madonna’s first album.

“Blonde Ambition” led the 2016 version of the Black List — an annual ranking of the best un-produced screenplays in Hollywood. Hollander’s script received 49 votes among the 250 executives voting. The project details Madonna’s efforts in the early 1980s in New York City to get her first album released while navigating fame, romance, and the dismissive attitude of the music industry at the time.

Today in Madonna History: April 18, 2017

On April 18 2017, the 25th Anniversary Edition of A League Of Their Own was released on Blu-ray.

This is the press release for the anniversary edition of the hit film:

Celebrate the 25th anniversary of this hilarious and beloved comedy starring Tom Hanks, Geena Davis and Madonna. Hanks stars as Jimmy Dugan, a washed-up ballplayer whose big league days are over. Hired to coach in the All-American Girls Baseball League of 1943 – while the male pros are at war – Dugan finds himself drawn back into the game by the hearts and heroics of his all-girl team, led by the indomitable Dottie Hinson (Davis). Lori Petty, Rosie O’Donnell and Jon Lovitz round out the all-star roster. Based on the true story of the pioneering women who blazed the trail for generations of athletes.

Has it really been 25 years since Tom Hanks, Geena Davis and Madonna hit one out of the park with the all-American comedy A League Of Their Own? On April 18, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment celebrates the 25th Anniversary of the iconic, memorable and relevant comedy favorite when A League Of Their Own returns to Blu-ray in an all-new special anniversary edition.

This anniversary edition includes the all-new bonus featurette “Bentonville, Baseball & The Enduring Legacy of A League of Their Own,” an unforgettable visit to the annual softball game at the Bentonville Film Festival, featuring all-new interviews with Geena Davis, and more. The Blu-ray also includes hilarious and insightful archival special features, including 15 deleted scenes, a documentary featuring interviews with the cast and filmmakers, Madonna’s This Used To Be My Playground music video and a filmmaker commentary.

Synopsis:
Celebrate the 25th anniversary of this hilarious and beloved comedy starring Tom Hanks, Geena Davis and Madonna. Hanks stars as Jimmy Dugan, a washed-up ballplayer whose big league days are over. Hired to coach in the All-American Girls Baseball League of 1943 – while the male pros are at war – Dugan finds himself drawn back into the game by the hearts and heroics of his all-girl team, led by the indomitable Dottie Hinson (Davis). Lori Petty, Rosie O’Donnell and Jon Lovitz round out the all-star roster. Based on the true story of the pioneering women who blazed the trail for generations of athletes.

Directed and Executive Produced by Penny Marshall from a screenplay by Lowell Ganz & Babaloo Mandel and based on a story by Kim Wilson & Kelly Candaele, A League Of Their Own is produced by Robert Greenhut and Elliot Abbott.

 

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