The intense new music video the artist released is for a single off her upcoming album, “Madame X.”
The video is inspired by the French Catholic saint, Joan of Arc, and echoes her 1989 video for “Like A Prayer,” which was condemned by the Vatican because it featured burning crucifixes and sexual role-play on an altar, among other things.
“She fought the English and she won, still the French were not happy. Still they judged her,” Madonna said in a statement. “They said she was a man, they said she was a lesbian, they said she was a witch, and, in the end, they burned her at the stake, and she feared nothing. I admire that.”
The video stars rapper Mykki Blanco as Joan of Arc, who at the end of the video has a quote that reads, “I have walked this earth, Black, Queer and HIV-positive, but no transgression against me has been as powerful as the hope I hold within.”
Madonna is no stranger to shocking viewers with her over-the-top visuals.
Just take her 1984 video for “Like A Virgin.” She was criticized for its overt sexuality, which included scenes of her writhing around in a wedding dress. Another example: the video for “Papa Don’t Preach,” released in 1986 and centered on a young girl who tells her father she’s pregnant.
“Dark Ballet” is fresh proof that Madonna has never been afraid to push the limits.
“Madame X” is expected to be released June 14.