Wow really don’t know where to start. Three days London, it felt like 1 big euphoric trip.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Kimberly and me met at Central Station Amsterdam on the 4th of February to catch the train to London. Both really excited and nervous.

I’d already seen the show twice in Lisbon, but I felt as nervous as prior to my very first show. Not only because of a possible cancellation of mine, but also because it’s going to be Kimberly’s first show.

We had a nice train trip, talking a lot about Madonna. Nice to see that we were on the same level regarding other plans. Which meant we both wanted to chill and go with the flow during the day. Perfect match!
When we arrived we walked to the hotel and checked in. A little touch up before meeting Hans and Ronald. Lovely seeing them again. We had a nice pizza in the always tasty Pizza Express. Later on we went for some drinks at the Compton. Of course I was wearing a Madonna shirt and the bartender directly started talking about the tour. I always like these little chats.

The next day in the breakfast room I spotted a guy in a Madonna hoodie. I felt like I needed to talk to him LOL. Time to have a walk to explore London and take a look at the theater. It was only a 15 minute walk to the theater. It looked much smaller than the Lisbon venue, I got instantly excited and nervous again. I felt like a teenager! After taking some pictures we were walking around a bit more before we went back to the hotel.
Taking a little break, reading and talking a lot about this tour, and about the amazing Madonna moments we already had in the past. I can talk talk for hours about M if needed. Time to take shower and get dressed for the first show! Listening to Madame X while getting ready. I still can’t stop listenig to the album, her best and most experimental since Ray of Light (in my opinion).

On our way we had a quick dinner, trying to be relaxed and not so nervous. Arriving at the venue Kimberly met a good friend she hadn’t seen in years. Great guy, we stayed together until we went to our seats. One of the nicest thing is meeting old and new friends from all over the world during Madonna events. Quoting Madonna “we are all on the same boat”.. Yes a cruise with only Madonna lovers.

Anyway we arrived at the theater and almost directly one of the staff members came over and asked us wich seat we had, so she could write it down on the famous Madame X tour seating card. The event is phone free, so with this card we could check inside where our seats are. Shortly after the doors opened and within minutes we were already inside the theater. Such a difference with Lisbon. There it all went fast as well, but with a really good security check. London was only a quick check, and we were let in. I wanted to buy the London shirt at the merch booth, there was a little queue. After that, I finally started to relax a bit.

The London Palladium is beatiful inside. When going to the bathroom I found a free photobooth upstairs, including wigs and other fun stuff…After the photo’s I was really in a party mood and couldn’t wait until the concert started.

While waiting I saw a lot of familiar faces and friends, really great to see them again. Also after chatting only online then finally see each other in real life. You know who you are. Music Makes The People Come Together. Really love my #madonnafamily!

Weird that you have no clue of time, because your phone is locked. Eventually we found out it was around 7:45pm. Time to go inside, because the band was about to play some songs. Arriving at our seats my heart skipped a beat. Row B seat 16+17 wich means second row dead centre. The space between the first row and the stage was really small, so we had perfect seats, not even 1 metre away and didn’t have to bow our heads because the stage was not high either.

The band started to play some instrumental songs, It was the same set as they did in Lisbon. Playing Secret, Who’s that girl, Don’t tell me and Like a Virgin and some non M songs. It got us even more in the mood, hearing everybody singing along to these classics.

Madonna started shortly after.

I’ll try not to bring any spoilers and will only write about the unexpected things that happened during the show. Indeed our seats were perfect. A lot happened right in front of us. Seeing Madonna for almost 2 hours and 20 minutes this up close and personal is every fans’ wet dream. She was in a really great mood. I was a bit afraid after seeing her in Lisbon (the January 16 and 18 show). In Lisbon she was obviously in pain, stiff and suffering. I was like, impossible that’s she’s gonna finish this tour.

Toning she was serving old skool Madonna realness! Many times during the show I had flashbacks to Blond Ambition. She was in such a great mood and the energy from the audience was electric. She really felt it and gave us everything! It happend that Andrew Lloyd Weber was in the house. So she took us with her on a little trip down memory lane. Explaining that when she for the first time sang ‘Don’t Cry For Me Argentina’ he almost started crying, it was that bad.

She told it in really funny way. also that she took singing classes. She said that she still is not as good and Patti Lupone but better than the first time she sang it. I really like that M knows her limits and doesn’t deny it.
A bit later on in the show, there was no beer bitch, but she sat and sang an almost a-cappella version of Don’t cry for me….Unexpected, very emotional and personal.

The show continued and she was at her best.

After Like a Prayer she started to scream This is cencorship motherfuckers. Artists are here to disturb the peace. Also that she needed to do one more song, but was not allowed to.
For a split second I didn’t understand what was happening. But it turned out that it was after 11 and the show needed to finish.

Normally the curfew is at 11-11:15. Every other show she did in London during this tour she finished between 11 and 11:15. This time the theater decided that at 11pm it was enough and closed the curtain. No one and nothing is gonna stop Madonna!

She came on with her band and dancers to the front of the stage and sung her last song I Rise almost a-cappella, right in front of us. She gave us everything and extra! I Rise is about nothing is gonna stop us, and that you rise above it all. Well this couldn’t be more perfect in this exact moment. During the show I was waving with a rainbow flag Scott Walker made me. At one point during the song the dancer Nicholas Huchard next to Madonna grabbed my flag and waved with it behind Madonna during the rest of the song.

I could cry!!!

This was the best Madonna show i ever witnessed myself.

The Madonna we all fell in love with. Funny sarcastic, really strong vocals and very personal. She really had an amazing time fed by the amazing vibe the audience gave her. This was definetely a show where she gave us more energy than we could handle. After leaving the theater we went to the entrance again, to meet up with some friends and to feel the atmosphere. Everybody around us was like “OMG what happened, best show ever”. There were also some bootleg shirts to buy in front of the theater. Some really cool shirts.

Walking to the hotel and eventually in the hotelroom, we couldn’t stop talking about the concert. It was really epic!

The next day, Feb 6th

During the day I had an appointment with a friend from Amsterdam, who moved to London a couple of years ago with his partner. The last couple of years he made a career switch from photographer to tattoo artist (jctattoos). His work is amazing, and I’m very grateful that he had time to place a tattoo on my body. A birthday (Feb 7th) present to myself.

I have several (madonna) tattoos but none of her face yet. So i’m extremely happy with my Madonna silhouette under my armpit. Still high on last nights’ show, getting this tattoo makes it all extra special. A liftetime memory wich shall always make me smile. I also found out that we made it to Madonna’s instagram, a clip from instagram TV, showing the censorship and how she sang I Rise. You could definetely see how close we were!

Back in the hotel we went for some shopping, going back to take a shower and ready for night 2 of Madonna’s Madame X Tour. Same pattern as the day before, dinner and then walking to the venue. We got in really quickly and chilled upstairs listening to the DJ. Very strange that he played a lot of ballads, made us a but sleepy.

Around 8 we went to our seats. OMG again fantastic seats, next to the isle on row E. The stairs she takes coming down, is up until row C, so again very up close and personal. A dream came true. She was again in a great mood, but also sarcastic about the curfew last night. It would expected that she was very pissed, and showed that to the audience, but no.

“Madame X is also a story teller, but she can’t be a good one on a stopwach. Because the iron curtain is waiting.” For the first time Madonna talked about the past cancellations. She told us, there are 2 versions of the show. Not a shortened half show. It was this or nothing, she really wants to perform for the fans, and made this decision. So my guess is, that night 1 will be with the original 3 extra songs.

To be honest, it is that you know about it, but it really felt like a complete Madonna show. And I can tell, because I was lucky to see both versions..I really get the reactions from the fans, about seeing the show “incomplete”. But I highly recommend to accept it, and enjoy what you get. It’s still the best she ever did on tour!!!!!

Again there was no “beer bitch”moment, but she sat down on the stairs again. The same stairs very close to our seats. Another great unexpected surprise, she sang The Sound Of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel. It was absolutly amazing, very strong voice and the vibe was unbelievably intimate. The rest of the show went on as usual. At the last song she comes down to leave the theater in the isle where we were sitting. For the first time in my life I touched Madonna, we both got the infamous fist bump!!

I can die now in peace, because I touched her. Oh the same for her, cause she touched me LOL LOL LOL.

After leaving the theater we went to the the entrance again, for some last pictures. Again a lot of unofficial shirts plus an amazing hoodie. The general talk outside was, like the night before, about how amazing the show was. Everybody loved it.

The last surpise was passing us by at Oxford street, when walking back to our hotel. Rocco Ritchie, was walking by. Of course we didn’t act like we saw him. But it was a funny surprise.

Back in the hotel, we couldn’t stop talking about our Madame X London experience. It was way better, and we got more than we ever could’ve dreamed of. You can’t compare this with her previous tours. My favorite tour is MDNA, but this tour is just as good!

She lifted once more, a concert experience to the next level!

Can’t wait until i see my final 2 shows in Paris!

Dave Crombeen