On May 20 1996, Madonna’s Take A Bow was honored as one of the Most Performed Songs Of 1995 at the 13th annual ASCAP Pop Music Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California.
On March 10 2016, Madonna performed the first Tears Of A Clown show at the Forum Theatre in Melbourne, Australia. Since Madonna had not performed in Australia since 1993, she decided to put on a unique show for her Australian fans. The show included some of her lesser performed songs, covers, hits and some fan favourites that were not being performed during the Rebel Heart Tour (which was going on a the same time as the Tears Of A Clown show).
Madonna wanted the show to combine music, comedy and storytelling, with a circus or clown theme in mind.
Only members of Madonna’s official fan club, Icon, were able to acquire tickets. 1500 fans attended the show.
Madonna performed the following songs:
- Send In The Clowns
- Drowned World/Substitute For Love
- X-Static Process
- Between The Bars (Elliot Smith cover)
- Nobody’s Perfect
- Easy Ride
- I’m So Stupid
- Paradise (Not For Me)
- Joan Of Arc
- Don’t Tell Me
- Mer Girl
- Take A Bow
Cameron Adams (News.com.au) had this to say about the show:
“Madonna poured much of her sadness into her intimate two-hour Tears Of A Clown show, peppering emotional renditions of her hits with cheeky jokes and banter. It’s the sort of thing you never thought you’d see a superstar do. The show was fascinating — and difficult — to watch. We’re not used to Madonna on stage doing anything less than a fully rehearsed, slick stage show.”
On January 7 1995, Take A Bow slid to #21 on the UK Singles chart after reaching a peak of #16 on December 24th, 1994.
While Take A Bow remains her longest-running #1 hit in the US, its disappointing UK chart performance marked an end to Madonna’s spectacular run of 35 consecutive top-ten UK singles from 1984’s Like A Virgin to 1994’s Secret. Take a bow, indeed!
On November 3 1994, Madonna began filming the Take A Bow music video in Ronda, Spain.
The video was directed by Michael Haussman. Haussman later directed the follow-up video to Take A Bow, You’ll See (in 1996).
Take A Bow was filmed between November 3 and 8 in Ronda. The bullfighting scenes were filmed at Plaza de Toros de Ronda.
The video depicts Madonna as a bullfighter’s neglected lover, yearning for his unrequited love. The bullfighter in the video was played by real-life Spanish bullfighter Emilio Muñoz.
On April 29, 1995, Bedtime Story peaked at #42 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the U.S.
Released as the follow-up to the longest-running U.S. #1 single of her career (Take A Bow), Madonna & Warner Bros. likely hoped that the momentum would carry over to the cutting-edge Björk penned title track. Despite a respectable reception in Europe (in the U.K. it performed better than Take A Bow) and significant buzz generated by its music video, Bedtime Story proved to be too unconventional for radio in North America, where it became her first fully promoted single to miss the Top 40 since Burning Up in 1983. It fared no better in Canada, peaking at #46 on May 1st, 1995.
The remixes for Bedtime Story, however, were a hit with North American D.J.’s and earned Madonna another #1 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Club Play chart.
On February 8 2015, Madonna performed Living For Love at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. The ceremony was held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.
Hitfix.com considered Madonna’s performance to be one of the best at the 2015 Grammys:
Madonna recruited the muscle-bound minotaurs from her Living for Love video for her Grammy performance of the new single, and she proved she was still a charismatic gale-force as a performer. Twenty years after she played the jilted wife of a matador in her Take a Bow video, Madonna’s now the show-running matador waving a cape at horned gents.