Today in Madonna History: February 5, 2014

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On February 5 2014, Madonna introduced Pussy Riot at the Amnesty International’s human rights concert.

It was the first Amnesty International concert for the cause in 16 years, and took place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

During her introduction, Madonna thanked Pussy Riot “for making pussy a ‘sayable’ word in my household. Now, my 8-year-olds say it all the time.”

More seriously, Madonna spoke of the death threats she received during the Russian portion of her MDNA World Tour, which took place at the same time as Pussy Riot’s trial.

“Eighty-seven of my fans were arrested for gay behavior — whatever that is,” she said.

The Pussy Riot members, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina, spoke in Russian with aggression and passion. A translator related the women’s speech.

“Freedom is not a given,” she translated. “It is something we have to fight for every day. It is our duty to speak for those who are still behind bars.”

Today in Madonna History: January 9, 1993

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On January 9 1993, Madonna attended a press conference to promote her new film Body Of Evidence at the Rihga Royal Hotel in Manhattan, New York.

Today in Madonna History: June 25, 1992

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On June 25 1992, Madonna attended the New York premiere of A League Of Their Own at the Ziegfeld Theatre.

Today in Madonna History: December 25, 1996

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On December 25 1996, EVITA was given a limited released in New York and Los Angeles.

Wide release for the film followed on January 10, 1997.

Critic Zach Conner commented:

“It’s a relief to say that EVITA is pretty damn fine, well-cast, and handsomely visualized. Madonna once again confounds our expectations. She plays Evita with a poignant weariness and has more than just a bit of star quality. Love or hate Madonna-Eva, she is a magnet for all eyes.”

Newsweek ’​s David Ansen wrote:

“It’s gorgeous. It’s epic. It’s spectacular. But two hours later, it also proves to be emotionally impenetrable.”

Today in Madonna History: September 27, 2017

On September 27 2017, Madonna made headlines around the world for both the MDNA Skin launch at Barney’s as well as an impromptu comedy stand-up gig she performed with Amy Schumer at the Comedy Cellar in New York.

Here’s what Billboard magazine had to say:

She sings, she dances, she acts, she has a new skincare line. But does she kill in a comedy club? Madonna added another notch to her creative belt on Tuesday night (Sept. 26) when she took the stage alongside pal Amy Schumer at New York’s legendary Comedy Cellar. The singer posted several pics from the surprise set, including one in which she’s standing next to Schumer, writing “And the next minute i was tagging along with @amyschumer at @nycomedycellar Making my stand up debut! What a thrill. Finally busted my cherry thank you Amy!”

According to attendees, Aziz Ansari, Jon Stewart and Louis C.K. also performed during the set.

Today in Madonna History: September 16, 2015

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On September 16 2015, Amy Schumer was the Unapologetic Bitch during Madonna’s Rebel Heart concert at Madison Square Gardens in New York.

Amy was also the Special Guest opening act, performing her comedy in front of a sold-out crowd of just over 14,000 Madonna fans.  Amy was the opening act for both Madison Square Gardens shows (September 16 and 17) and on September 19 at the Barclays Center.

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Today in Madonna History: May 13, 1983

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On May 13 1983, Madonna performed Physical Attraction during a track date at the FunHouse in New York City.

Located at 526 West 26th St, the FunHouse (1979-1985) was a breeding ground for the new electronic sounds of the street and helped to make its resident disc jockey, Jellybean Benitez, one of dance music’s first superstar DJ’s.

Of course, Jellybean’s close association with Madonna certainly didn’t hinder his growing popularity either. His first working collaboration with Madonna was to remix Physical Attraction, the b-side to her sophomore single on Sire Records, Burning Up/Physical Attraction, which may explain why it was chosen over the more frequently performed lead track for her performance at the FunHouse. The same remix of Physical Attraction was later used on her debut album, together with new remixes Jellybean provided for Burning Up and Lucky Star alongside his first full production for Holiday.

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