REVIEW: Madonna leaves lasting impression after first concert in Oklahoma

If Madonna wanted to make a splash with her first performance in Oklahoma, she certainly did that.

The Queen of Pop put on a highly energetic, fun, shocking, musically impressive show Thursday night at the BOK Center. If your jaw wasn’t on the floor, you were grinning as much as she was.

Though with a setlist heavy on her newest album, it left me wanting more. With a start time at 10:30 p.m., I don’t know if I could have handled it.

Nine songs of the 22-song setlist were from “Rebel Heart,” Madonna’s 13th studio album released last year to critical praise and commercial success. Many of the fans near me sang along to several of those new songs, which dominated the setlist early on.

Songs like “Iconic,” “Bitch, I’m Madonna” and “Holy Water,” which were three of the four opening songs, all from her latest album. Seeing her perform the songs live made me like them more than listening to the album version. Her voice was sometimes muddled early on but it was strong and steady. She even strapped on a guitar for the last song in that opening set, “Burning Up,” the second single she ever released.

That early group also showed some of the diversity in her style over her career. With the new songs, she shows that she’s at least keeping up with trends in music, with heavy electronic music. But “Burning Up” showed us a hard rocking, rock yelling Madonna with a Flying V guitar, not playing face-melting solos, but playing, which is more than most pop stars will do.

Later, more of her well-known hits were played, but Madonna altered them so that they felt new despite some being more than 30 years old. “True Blue” was played acoustic with Madonna playing the ukulele. “Like a Virgin” was broken down into a minimalist, bass heavy song with the lyrics and tone intimately familiar with every person in the nearly-full room. “Music” started off jazzy in a ‘20s speakeasy style. “Material Girl” could have come straight out of Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby.”

Her most musically impressive song of the night where fans got to really experience her untouched talent was a cover of “La vie en rose,” just her singing and playing a ukulele. Her vocal prowess was in the spotlight, hitting and sustaining higher notes in her range. And it being the next to last song before the encore and considering she had been singing and dancing and changing clothes all night, it was that much more impressive.

Read full review at TulsaWorld

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Madonna fans turn out in droves to see icon’s first Oklahoma show

As teenagers, Chanci Kasper and her friends looked at Madonna as an icon.

“She was a rebel. She was different,” said Kasper, of Fort Smith, Arkansas.

Thursday night, just in time for a birthday milestone, the four friends reunited at the BOK Center to finally experience Madonna in person.

“We’re all turning 40, so this is a gift for all of us,” said Kasper’s friend Jennifer Simpson of Broken Arrow.

Thursday was Madonna’s first time to perform in Oklahoma in her more than 30-year-long career.

And as Madonna descended in a cage as a dozen dancers waited, the crowd who had waited decades for her to perform in the state roared in approval.
Elaborate dancing and strong music drove fans to their feet as Madonna welcomed everyone: “Oklahoma! Are you ready?”
Loud cheering from the crowd was a clear affirmative.

The packed arena was full of adoring fans, many dressed in their finest fishnets, oversized hairbows and sparkles.

For many, Madonna’s appeal was overwhelming. She came into their lives when they were teenagers, an age when people are looking for a type of role model. For Katherine Yarnell of Beggs, it was Madonna’s strength that spoke to her.
“She has such a different style than other artists,” Yarnell said. “She’s not scared to be herself.”

That appealed to Jamil Gotcher, too. As a young woman, Madonna was a symbol of independence, and her highly catchy and danceable music didn’t hurt, she said.

“She represents my youth,” Gotcher said. “She represents freedom and bravery. She’s an icon.”

She was able to introduce her daughter, Jade Gotcher, to Madonna’s music.

“Our house was always full of music and dancing,” Jamil Gotcher said. “Like (Jade) said, she came out of the womb voguing.”
Madonna released her 13th studio album, “Rebel Heart,” last year. Her current tour continues through March.

The BOK Center made an event out of announcing the performance last fall, celebrating the chance to host her first performance not just in the city but in the state.

But this definitely was not Grant Vanderbilt’s first time to see her. He said he’s been to at least five Madonna shows. This time, he only had to drive from central Arkansas to see her. But dressed in a long pink dress with an enormous bow, he could hardly wait to get inside the arena to do it all again.

He got his start with Madonna in sixth grade, rifling through his cousin’s CD collection and coming across “The Immaculate Collection.” That thrill of the first listen is still strong when he hears her now.
“I loved it. It’s all I listened to for 10 years,” Vanderbilt said. “It’s exactly what I wanted to be.”


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New Security Measures In Place For Madonna’s Tulsa Concert

TULSA, Oklahoma –Expect long lines at Tulsa’s BOK Center Thursday evening as Madonna brings her Rebel Heart tour to Tulsa.

This is the first time Madonna has ever performed Oklahoma.

Her show begins at 8 p.m., but the BOK Center says doors for the concert will open at 6:30 p.m. thanks to new security measures.  Earlier this year the center added metal detectors as you enter the building and they will be conducting bag searches.

1/5/2016 Related Story: BOK Center Guests Greeted With New Security Policy

Center officials say no bags larger than 13″ x 15″ x 6” will be permitted inside BOK Center.  They say guests who have bags larger than this size will be asked to return them to their vehicles or discard them.

9/15/2015 Related Story: Ahead Of Madonna, News On 6 Goes Backstage At BOK Center


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BOK Center prepares for Madonna’s Rebel Heart tour

TULSA, Okla. — The BOK Center is preparing for Madonna to rock the stage Thursday night in downtown Tulsa. This will be Madge’s first show in the Sooner State and is a part of her “Rebel Heart” tour.

Wednesday evening, Madonna’s tour stopped in Houston, Texas. She paid tribute to the late David Bowie who lost his battle with cancer on Sunday.

The BOK’s twitter account tweeted shortly after her Houston performance to ask if Tulsa would also see a Bowie tribute Thursday.

Anyone think we’ll get to see @Madonna do a tribute to David Bowie tomorrow night? We sure hope so! BOK Center (@BOKCenter) January 13, 2016

Madonna hits the stage at 8 p.m.

Concert goers will need to arrive early to prepare for the BOK’s new security measures. New metal detectors and bag checks are expected to delay entry to the venue. Doors will open 90 minutes early to allow patrons to get through security enough time before the show.

To get full details on the new security measures, visit the BOK Center’s website.


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Stop Madonna concert! PM Lee should intervene – FCBC Pastor Lina Khong supports

Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart Tour’ is coming to Singapore on 28 February 2016 and some religious conservatives in Singapore are against Madonna’s performance here.

Facebook user Carrie Shalom, posting in the group ‘We are Against Pink Dot in Singapore‘ (a network which encourages mostly anti-LGBT (lesbian, gay, transgender and trans-sexual) discussions), said that after the Adam Lambert concert, now Madonna’s coming here, and that such concerts would “corrupt more of our people, our young people and harm society”.

With the caption:

“Singapore IS ROTTING… Fast… When authorities permit Pink ROT to be celebrated and promoted, year after year after year, homosexuality, transgender affirming propaganda films in our cinemas, Adam Lambert in Celebrate Countdown 2016 and NOW trashy, crude and vulgar Madonna with her profusely Sacrilegious, Sexually and Religiously Offensive and Obscene Rebel Heart World Tour IN Singapore to corrupt more of our people, our young people and harm society!

Parents and sound-minded citizens, you have a duty NOT to sit on the fence or stay silent when you see our morals and values being eroded away by militant secularists and LGBT activists!”

Read full article at The Independent

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Why You Can’t Miss Out on Madonna’s Two-Night Performance in Miami

Madonna’s epic two-night showcase at American Airlines arena reunites the material girl and her old friend Miami.

It will be a homecoming of sorts when Madonna hits Miami as part of her tour for Rebel Heart, her 13th studio album, on January 23 and 24. Back in the ’90s, when Madge set down roots in Miami, she electrified South Beach nightlife, bringing glamour, excitement, and a flock of private jets carrying fellow stars along for the ride. By that point, her status as one of the biggest cultural forces in the world was well established—an undeniable pop juggernaut, fashion icon (think Jean Paul Gaultier cone bras), and agent for social change (as an empowering feminist who rallied on behalf of her legions of gay fans, and the fight against AIDS, among many other humanitarian efforts). Her searing, controversial 1992 book, Sex, much of it set in Miami, only further secured her role as a provocateur. Shot by Steven Meisel, the photo tome featured images of Madonna cavorting with gal pal Ingrid Casares, who went on to cofound Miami hot spot Liquid, and hitchhiking stark naked on the streets of the Magic City.

Madonna blazed the trail for today’s boundary-pushers, like Lady Gaga and Kesha; her eponymous 1983 debut set the standard for a career that merges pop and dance with the freedom to express yourself in any way you see fit. Her latest endeavor, Rebel Heart, is no different, with production from the likes of Diplo, Avicii, and Kanye West; it’s also, in some ways, a throwback to the 57-year-old’s clubby early days, says her first collaborator (and then-boyfriend), Jellybean Benitez, who produced her breakout “Holiday” for that first album. “From the single ‘Living for Love’ to the lyric in the title track (‘Rebel Heart’), I can see a lot of her in this particular record,” says Benitez of Rebel Heart. “She’s returned closer to her club roots with it. This is the closest thing to what’s going on in club culture in years for her.”

Benitez, a superstar DJ who headlined PAMM Third Thursdays: Poplife Social last April, has worked with and remixed many of the greats over the years, from Whitney Houston to Michael Jackson. “The thread that runs through all of them is passion,” he says. “These artists are fearless. No matter what the obstacle is, they find a way through it, around it, over it. They’re always looking at the good things that are happening and not focusing on the negative things that could be happening. That’s her.”

Early in Madonna’s career, Miami proved a fantastic playground—from hot spots like Liquid to the Blue Door restaurant at the Delano to Versace’s mansion, everywhere the Material Girl went, the paparazzi, crowds, and drama followed. “She was often [at the Versace Mansion] when Donatella and Gianni were there,” says her ’90s friend (and rumored on-again-off-again paramour) Chris Paciello, who co-owned Miami nightclub Liquid with Casares. “They’d throw a little party at [Gianni’s] house, and then they’d all go out to the clubs after. She had her own little crew: photographers Herb Ritz, Bruce Weber, and Steven Meisel; Orlando Pita, who used to do her hair; Rupert Everett, and when she was in town, they’d all be here.”

Although Madonna departed Miami for homes in New York and London, the occasional South Florida appearance—such as asking the 2012 Ultra Music Festival crowd if they’d seen “Molly” (a nickname for the drug ecstasy, which was also the title of her album just prior to Rebel Heart)—has left her gone but certainly not forgotten. Madonna performs on Saturday, January 23, and Sunday, January 24, at AmericanAirlines Arena, 601 Biscayne Blvd., Miami;

Read more at OceanDrive

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NEW: Desperately Seeking Susan added to the Filmography! Press, memorabilia, rare videos and much more!


One of Madonna’s most beloved films Desperately Seeking Susan has been added to our Filmography. This includes many rare items from our private collection such as the insanely rare German lifesize display (as featured in Encyclopedia Madonnica 20 by Matthew Rettenmund). What you can find:

  • many rare press articles from Japan, Holland to the USA
  • rare memorabilia items (the replica boots, the lifesize display from Germany, rare presskits, posters, original VHS videos, dvd and blu-ray and much more)
  • film facts
  • rare videos such as bloopers, the making of, the premiere and a behind the scenes featurette
  • view the official Into The Groove video
  • Various order links

ENJOY Desperately Seeking Susan now, while we continue working on Shanghai Surprise

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Madonna pays tribute to ‘inspiring and innovative’ David Bowie on stage in Texas

The Queen of Pop covered Bowie’s song ‘Rebel Rebel’ as a picture montage of the star was played on a massive screen behind her

“Devastated” Madonna lay down on stage and put her head in her arms after paying tribute to “inspiring and innovative” David Bowie last night.

The Queen of Pop remembered the late music legend in Houston, Texas as part of her Rebel Heart tour.

Madge covered Bowie’s hit ‘Rebel Rebel’ as a picture montage of the star was displayed on a big screen behind her.

Following her performance she dramatically dropped to the floor, putting her arms out in front of her.

Sharing a picture of the moment to Twitter she wrote: “Paying Tribute to My Favorite Rebel. Thank you!……….David Bowie #rebelhearttour”

Heroes singer David passed away on Sunday aged 69 following an 18-month battle with cancer.

In a lengthy tribute posted to Facebook following the news of his death, Madge described Bowie as “unique and provocative.”

She wrote: “I’m devastated. David Bowie changed the course of my life forever.

“I never felt like I fit in growing up in Michigan. Like an oddball or a freak. I went to see him in concert at Cobo Arena in Detroit. It was the first concert I’d ever been to.

“I snuck out of the house with my girlfriend wearing a cape.
We got caught after and I was grounded for the summer. I didn’t care.

“I already had many of his records and was so inspired by the way he played with gender confusion. Was both masculine and feminine. Funny and serious. Clever and wise. His lyrics were witty ironic and mysterious.

“At the time he was the thin white Duke and he had mime artists on stage with him and very specific choreography. And I saw how he created a persona and used different art forms within the arena of rock and roll to create entertainment.

“I found him so inspiring and innovative. Unique and provocative. A real genius. His music was always inspiring but seeing him live set me off on a journey that for me I hope will never end.

“His photographs are hanging all over my house today. He was so chic and beautiful and elegant. So ahead of his time.

“Thank you David Bowie. I owe you a lot. The world will miss you.”


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After late start, Madonna sings an emotional tribute to David Bowie at Houston concert

before midnight at Madonna’s tightly choreographed and highly entertaining Rebel Heart Tour concert at the Toyota Center on Tuesday, she veered off script, scratching two songs for a heartfelt tribute to David Bowie, who died Sunday after a bout with cancer.

“He was one of the geniuses in the music industry and one of the greatest singer/songwriters of the 20th century and he changed my life,” she told the sellout crowd of cheering fans. “He showed me that it was OK to be different, right? He was the first rebel heart I laid eyes on. So I think we should get this party started.”

She whipped off her senorita dress from a segment of the show that featured “La Isla Bonita” and a samba version of “Dress You Up” to reveal satin gym shorts and sequined bra and launched into Bowie’s classic 1974 hit, “Rebel Rebel,” which replaced “Who’s That Girl” and “Frozen” she had performed in this portion of the concert at previous stops.

For a few minutes, as images of Bowie flashed on a video screen, Madonna sang the song like an excited  teenager, sometimes off key, thrashing on the floor in excitement — and it didn’t seem overly planned like much of her concert did.

It was pure magic.

“Let a girl catch her breath, right?” she said afterwards. “Oh my god.”

And then she turned serious again, praising Bowie for “the groundbreaking that he did with his music, his attitude, his style, the way he looked at life, with all of it, you know?

“In a way he opened the door for transgenders and made people feel like it was OK to be different, that it really didn’t matter if you dressed like a boy or a girl. What matters is on the inside. Am I right?”

“I’m feeling a little bit emotional. I am going to miss him. He fucking blew my mind.”

The rest of the nearly 2-1/2-hour concert was typical Madonna in a number of ways:

Read full review at HoustonCultureMap

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Madonna fans stick to their icon through the years

With bangles all the way up her arms, hair tussled and fake microphone in hand, Andrea Fowler would channel her musical icon in the mirror, the music as loud as it would go.

She thought the door was locked to keep her brother out during this particular bedroom Madonna concert, where Fowler as a teenager would give it her all. But it wasn’t.

“He comes in and touches my shoulder, and it scared me so bad I just fell to the floor,” Fowler said.

Generations of fans of the Queen of Pop held concerts and sang into hairbrushes from the early ’80s, when synthesizers introduced us to the “Lucky Star,” to the release of her 13th studio album last year, “Rebel Heart.” Madonna has thrived in changing landscapes, which has made her even more appealing to fans.

Fans will get to sing along with the icon herself when she performs in Oklahoma for the first time on Thursday. Madonna is set to perform at 8 p.m. Thursday at the BOK Center. Tickets start at $40 and are available at

Since 1983, Madonna has sold more than 300 million albums around the world. She is listed at No. 2 behind The Beatles on Billboard’s Hot 100 All-Time Top Artist list, making her the most successful solo act on the U.S. singles charts.

She has toured the world and become one of the highest-grossing female performers in history. She has starred in several films and earned a Golden Globe award.

For decades, Madonna has been part of the pop culture. She has adapted to the times but stayed true to herself, which has kept her fans on board, picking up new ones along the way.

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Madonna captivates Houston fans at Toyota

Madonna is still very much aware of her powers. And her Rebel Heart Tour is a showcase fit for a queen.

Tuesday’s show at Toyota Center was masterful and majestic, a perfectly balanced blend of old and new. The diverse crowd — soccer moms and couples, gaggles of girls, gay men and millennials — waited until 10:30 p.m. for her to appear. Few seemed to mind.

“Born to be a superstar/That’s exactly what you are,” she declared during opener “Iconic.” She moved freely and fluidly amid an army of male and female dancers.

Recent single “Bitch I’m Madonna” was followed by “Burning Up,” one of her first singles and an early highlight. New song “Holy Water” gave way to “Vogue” as she writhed on poles with female dancers (half) dressed as R-rated nuns. Devil Pray” played like a continuation of “Like a Prayer.” Catholicism remains a frequent theme in her performances.

Few, if any, current pop stars can match Madonna’s might as a live performer. That she’s fully aware of it makes her all the more captivating.

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Madonna’s ‘Rebel Heart’ beats tonight in Houston

“Rebel Heart” is Madonna’s finest work in a decade, a diverse collection of songs that find her alternately defiant and vulnerable. And like her or not, you’ve probably grown up with her music in some way.

It didn’t hit me until “Like a Prayer” in 1989. Something about that album, sonically and visually, resonated with me. Every Madonna album since has given me something: the criminally underrated “Erotica” and “American Life;” the lush R&B bounce of “Bedtime Stories;” the towering, influential beauty of “Ray of Light” and the disco-heaven of “Confessions on a Dance Floor.” I found the chewy center in 2008’s “Hard Candy” and think much of the electro-pop current running through 2012’s “MDNA” was ahead of the curve.

Last year’s “Bitch I’m Madonna” was her 46th No. 1 on Billboard’s Dance Club Songs chart, making her the artist with the most. She performs new and old songs tonight at Toyota Center.

Come back tonight for a full review and photos from the show.


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Why we love Madonna (again): Let us count the ways as concert hits H-Town

it really be more than 25 years since Madonna launched her Blonde Ambition tour in Houston? In 1990 she appeared before a sellout crowd at The Summit (now Lakewood Church) in a Jean Paul Gaultier cone bra and an I Dream of Jeannieponytail, thrilling a sellout crowd with such hits as “Express Yourself,” “Like a Virgin” and “Papa Don’t Preach.”

When she returned to Houston in 2008 for a sold-out concert at Minute Maid Park on her Sticky & Sweet Tour, I wrote a biting article for the Houston Chronicle stating the case that she wasn’t relevant anymore.

But now, as she prepares for a Tuesday night appearance at the Toyota Center on her Rebel Heart Tour, I’m in love with Madonna again. Here’s why:

1. She puts on a heck of a show

In that 1990 tour, Madonna redefined the concert show as a mixture of rock, performance art, fashion and Broadway, with five thematic acts, like a play. She does it again on the Rebel Heart Tour, with sets divided into Joan of Arc/Samuri, Rockabilly meets Tokyo, Latin/Gypsy, Party/Flapper and Encore.

2. Her newest CD is good

Despite no longer selling anywhere close to the level of Taylor Swift or Adele, Madonna’s lastest CD, Rebel Heart, has a lot of good music, featuring collaborations with Diplo, Avicil and Kayne West and songs about love, heartbreak and being a survivor. And who can resist “Bitch, I’m Madonna”?

Rebel Heart is a long, passionate, self-referential meditation on losing love and finding purpose in chilling times. It’s also a chance for the Queen of Pop to floss a bit and reflect on how she painstakingly carved a path others have happily twerked down in the years since her 1983 debut,” a Rolling Stone review asserts.

3. She mixes in the hits

Such classics as “Holiday,” “Material Girl,” “La Isla Bonita” and acoustic versions of “True Blue” and “Who’s That Girl” are part of the current tour. And three different songs on her new CD refer to old hits.

4. She puts on a fashion show

At 57, Madonna still has a remarkable taut body, the better to showcase designs from Alexander Wang, Jeremy Scott, Gucci designer Alessandro Michele and Prada designer Miuccia Prada. While some want her to act her age, she continues to redefine what age means, even if she is an “Unapologetic Bitch.”

5. And she may prove she’s human

At a Mexico City concert last week, Madonna appeared to tear up onstage as she referred to a custody battle over her 15-year-old-son with ex-husband Guy Ritchie, and delivered a candid speech about the difficult times she’s going through, according to Billboard.

“We all go through challenging times in our life, and that includes me,” she said. “I, too, go through challenging times in my life, and right now is one of them. Sometimes I think I can’t do a show. I don’t have the energy, I don’t have the strength.”

“I come out here tonight and I can see your faces, and I look into your eyes and I see so much love and it gives me strength. So thank you. You are rebel hearts. I feel your hearts beating with mine.”

Let’s see what happens in Houston.

Madonna appears at the Toyota Center Tuesday night

Read more at HoustonCultureMap

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