MDNA Tour diary - North America

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MDNA DVD recorded in Miami


Madonna ended her North American tour in Miami. Both shows were recorded for the official DVD release.

Her speech was quite general about respect, tolerance and love. She called people sitting down in her show 'pussies'. "Speaking of love..." led her into Masterpiece, so no Holiday on the DVD.

During the Like A Virgin/Love Spent performance, she held another collection for Sandy victims. At one point, while laying down on the floor, Madonna pushed the microphone forward with her tongue.

Celebration was again mixed with Give It 2 Me, so this is the version that will be heard on the DVD.

Madonna goes Gangnam Style... with PSY!

New York City

What a nice surprise for the NYC crowd at Madison Square Garden! On the second night, after her speech about defying prejudices, Madonna treated the crowd to a mash-up of Give It 2 Me and Gangnam Style. The crowd went completely wild when PSY himself came on stage to perform the crazy Gangnam choreography together with Madonna and her dancers.

As an extra treat, Madonna and PSY gave a rendition of Music together as well.

Madonna and PSY at Madison Square Garden, NYC Madonna at Madison Square Garden, NYC

During her Like A Virgin striptease, she urged fans to throw money on stage to donate to victims of hurricane Sandy. When only a few dollar bills were thrown, she frowned "You're not being generous, New York City! I'll just sit here & wait. I shouldn't be able to see the black on this floor." She added "That's okay, everything you do, comes back to you."

The tattoo on her back was again made up by the 3 Hebrew letters alef, lamed and dalet.

Defying the boos in hometown Detroit


After more than 5 months of touring, Madonna came home in her birthtown Detroit.

"It's no secret that I'm extremely happy to be here. I'm also extremely happy that Obama won!" While many cheered her on, there was also some booing in the crowd, to which she replied: "You can boo all you want, at least we have the privilege to choose who we vote to be our leader! Don't be haters". She also referred to her dad (who was watching the show from the Golden Triangle, together with her stepmum Joan), "My dad is here tonight. And we don't have the same political opinions, and we still love each other. When he gives his opinion, I don't say boo!"

She then skipped Holiday and dedicated Masterpiece to all her fans in Michigan, who made her who she is today, a hard working girl.

Check out a break-dancing Rocco in the second compilation video.

"Madonna rhymes with Obama!"


While the entire world eagerly awaited the results of the US presidential election, Madonna performed in Pittsburgh. As a devoted Democrat, Madonna has been endorsing Barack Obama throughout her MDNA shows, and before last night's show she posted a video on her Youtube channel, which shows her and her crew into a pre-show prayer for Obama. Everyone is seen wearing a special OBMA shirt. Some group pictures were also posted on Twitter.


Looks like it worked, because the good news came in during her show. "Do you know what just happened?!" she grinned, after which she led the crowd into a "Fuck yeah!" chant. "Did you notice how Madonna rhymes with Obama?" she joked. When she heard a few boos and saw some thumb-downs, she reacted, "I love you too, but I want a president with a moral compass."

After her speech, she launched into Holiday to celebrate the win with a "happy dance". Afterwards, she dedicated Masterpiece to "Barack Obama, because he is a masterpiece, and to everybody who made it possible for that masterpiece to remain in the White House." She jokingly added: "I hope there's alcohol there."

While performing her striptease, Madonna said she'd keep the promise she made: when Obama would get re-elected, she'd take it all off. And she did, she kicked off her pants and performed the rest of Like A Virgin and Love Spent in her panties. Right before Love Spent, while laying on the floor, she urged the crowd to throw money on stage: "We're keeping a collection for victims of hurricane Sandy, so don't be stingy!".

For the closer Celebration/Give It 2 Me, everyone was wearing the OBMA shirt. Madonna ended the show with "Goodnight everyone. Obama for President, oh yeah!"

MDNA gets a bit sticky & sweet

St. Paul

Last night in the Twin Cities, the MDNA Tour got a hint of the Sticky & Sweet Tour, when closer Celebration got mashed up with a bit of Give It 2 Me.

The second night, Madonna had another surprise in store. When she finished Human Nature, she recited a verse from American Life:

I'd like to express my extreme point of view
I'm not a christian and I'm not a jew
I'm just living out the american dream
And I just figured out that nothing is what it seems

For the first night, Madonna brought back the originl "No Fear" tattoo. On the second night, she sported a tattoo with the Hebrew letters alef, lamed and dalet that we recognize from the Die Another Day video.

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During her speech she said "I have the best fans in the whole world! So take that, Lady Gaga! You know, I invited her to sing with me on stage but she turned me down. But it's okay, I've been rejected before. It builds character."

Technical problems in St. Louis

St. Louis

Madonna encountered some technical problems when performing in St. Louis. When she didn't hear anything through her earphones, she stopped I'm A Sinner and restarted when everything was fixed.

During her speech she spoke to some fans in the Golden Triangle, congratulated one with his birthday and another with his costume. She asked the crowd if they were all registered to vote, "You're dressed like me, but are you gonna vote like me?"

She dedicated Love Spent to "all the people who lost their homes in New York". Holiday wasn't performed.

Obama endorsement draws boos

New Orleans

As Madonna is making her way through America's Bible belt, her endorsement for president Obama is falling on deaf ears. In New Orleans, her speech drew boos from several conservatives and some even left the venue. "I don't care who you vote for", Madonna added, "as long as you don't take the right to vote for granted."

First Dallas show cancelled


After almost 5 grueling months, the MDNA Tour is taking its toll. Suffering from laryngitis, the doctor ordered on Friday that Madonna to stay in for the next 36 hours, forcing her to cancel the first night in Dallas.

Fortunately, the rest did her good because the second night went on as scheduled. She apologized to the fans who had missed her because of the cancellation. She performed Love Spent, but not Holiday.

There was a minor incident during Like A Prayer when an overly enthousiastic fan in the Golden Triangle pulled Madonna's arm so hard that she fell down on stage. However, Madonna nicely rolled over and carried on with her performance.

Colorado crowd shocked by Madonna's guns


MDNA Tour - DenverWhen a crazy shooter entered a movie theater in Denver, Colorado during the premiere of 'The Dark Knight Rises', America reacted shocked. And although the MDNA show had contained gun props since late May, there were quite some reactions when it hit the US late August. When Madonna released a statement explaing that the guns used in the show are meant as a metamorphosis, it was obvious she wouldn't be changing the show. And yet, it was expected that it would still cause controversy when the show would hit Denver.

And so it did. Most reviews from last night's show report of shocked and outraged reactions of people who hadn't expected these violent elements and automatically linked it to the Aurora shooting. Fans who had read something of the show before of course knew it had nothing to do with the Denver shooting.

The show only started at 10.30 and due to lack of time, both Love Spent and Holiday were omitted from the setlist this time.

During her speech, she urged people to register to vote and said they should feel lucky they have the right to vote.

Madonna pays tribute to bullying victim Amanda


In Phoenix, Madonna made a dramatic statement against bullying. She showed off the name AMANDA written on her back, explaining that was in tribute to a 15-year-old Canadian girl, Amanda Todd, who committed suicide because of antigay bullying.

She also went political again, declaring that Obama won the presidential debate that night. She told the crowd that she loved even Republicans. "I am a Democrat. But I love you if you are not, because we preach tolerance."

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When a few audience members showed off some intimate behaviour, she joked: "Get a hotel room for that guys. You could get arrested for that in Russia." She later added, "No public displays of affection guys unless I am involved."

The show started at 10:30, leaving no time for Holiday but Love Spent was performed in full.

"I show my ass so you'd pay attention"

Las Vegas

In Las Vegas, Madonna explained why she undressed during the show:

"The other day a man came up to me and said, Why do you have to show your ass on stage? And I said to him, Why does anyone have to show their ass on stage? So that you pay attention. Right? Now some people like it when I show my ass. And some people think it's obscene. Well here's what I think is obscene – our lack of humanity towards one another, that's what's obscene. The fact that we, when push comes to shove, usually choose war over compromise, judgment over compassion, and fear over love. THAT is obscene."

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When she asked people if they were going to vote for Obama, she found a gay guy in front row who didn't raise his hand. "A gay Republican?!" she scoffed incredulously. "It's OK. I love you so much that I forgive you."

"This song is for you, Malala"

Los Angeles

MDNA Tour - L.A. "This song is for you, Malala", Madonna told a Los Angeles crowd before kicking off Human Nature. As a further tribute to the Pakistani girl Malala Yousafzai who had recently been shot by the Taliban, Madonna also sported "Malala" as tattoo on her back.

In her speech, she told Americans how lucky there are. She referred to Pussy Riot, of which two members still remain in jail. She referred to the lack of gay rights in Russia. And she referred to Malala's story. After the speech, she launched into Holiday.

Madonna celebrates Everybody's 30th bday

San Jose

During her visit at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Madonna didn't perform Holiday. Instead, she celebrated the 30th anniversary of her debut single Everybody. Before performing the song, she reminisced back to the day she heard her first single for the first time on the radio. "I was wondering when and if anything good was ever gonna happen to me. Well, be careful what you wish for, is all I have to say. I'm the perfect example that dreams do come true!"

She also performed Love Spent, combined with Like A Virgin. The tattoo on her back read "Survive".

Like A Virgin replaced by Love Spent in Vancouver


MDNA Tour - Vancouver For the final two Canadian tour stops, Martin Solveig opened the show. But it seems the crowd wasn't really warmed up. Madonna clearly wasn't happy with the passive reactions. At one point, she snapped "I hope you can appreciate how hard we're working up here!". When she points her microphone to one of the fans in the Golden Triangle and he can't immediately complete the lyrics, she shouts "You're wearing a T-shirt that says Open Your Heart and you don't know the words to the song? What the fuck?!". At the end of Celebration, she even said "I'm over this shit!"

The second night goes better, and has some surprises in store. Love Spent is now performed in its entirety, thereby replacing Like A Virgin. The chant by Priscilla Renea, previously heard on an acoustic bonus track version of Love Spent, was now also part of the performance. The choreography with dancer Marvin remained similar to Like A Virgin, except for the handful of money that Madonna throws at him.

Holiday on the other hand wasn't performed on the second night.

Fan gives Madonna 'Sexy' tattoo

Washington DC

MDNA Tour - WashingtonMadonna made one of her fans very happy. During her first show in Washington DC, she sported no tattoo onn her back. She kneeled down and offered a guy from the Golden Triangle the chance to write on her back a 4-letter word that describes her. The guy wrote the word 'sexy'.

The next night, Madonna endorsed President Obama during her speech. "We have a black muslim in the White House, now that is something!" she added. The press soon blew up this little phrase, up to the point Madonna felt the need to explain herself:

I was being ironic on stage. Yes, I know Obama is not a Muslim. Though I know that plenty of people in this country think he is. And what if he were? The point I was making is that a good man is a good man, no matter who he prays to. I don’t care what religion Obama is, nor should anyone else in America.

Both Holiday and Love Spent were performed and now seem to be an integral part of the MDNA setlist.

Chicago gets Love Spent!


The Chicago crowd was in for a great surprise last night. The performance of Like A Virgin was extended and flowed into a beautiful rendition of... Love Spent! Madonna sang the first few lines acoustically before the band accompanied her. With the piano and violin as main instruments, the song sounded beautiful and vulnerable.

Like A Virgin was performed mostly while lying down on top of the piano. Dancer Marvin only came on stage during Love Spent, dressed Madonna with the corset during the isntrumental part and then tightened it during the second verse. The performance ended with the usual piano solo from Like A Virgin.

Holiday, that other setlist addition, was included as well. But exceptionally the speech was left out this time, possibly to make room for Love Spent. However, her back tattoo read 'Obama' again, which was enough as political statement. She added: "When that man is elected to the White House for a second term, I will show all of my ass!".

The night before, she did talk about making a change yourself and to make sure not to vote for Mitt Romney. She also paid hommage to her friend Oprah Winfrey:

"The last time I was here it was for the farewell show for Oprah Winfrey, the last time I was in this building. That was a great experience because she's an amazing woman. A woman who I really admire. And we don't have a lot of rolmodels these days, people we can look up to and admire. We need more, right? She's done a lot to change the world and I'm very grateful to her for that. But you don't need to be Oprah Winfrey to change the world. You don't need to be me to make a change, you just need to be YOU!"

Madonna dedicates song to Lady Gaga, hints at duet

Atlantic City

Holiday seems to have become a part of the show routine now.

But something new at the show in Atlantic City: Madonna dedicated Masterpiece to... Lady Gaga! And she even hinted at a possible collaboration!

I'm gonna dedicate this next song to Lady Gaga. You wanna know something? I love her. I do love her. Imitation is the highest form of flattery. And one day, very soon, we're gonna be on stage together. Think I'm kidding?

"Did you take MDNA before the show?"


As she took her MDNA stage back to Canada for a few more shows, Madonna repeated the Holiday interlude in Ottawa and Toronto, this time a longer version.

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In Toronto she joked around during her speech, asking fans if they took "MDNA" before the show. She said her jacket felt too tight and she wasn't able to breathe. Then she continued by asking the fans in the Golden Triangle if they had ever worn anything that was too tight, adding "I bet you have, I bet all of you have." When a fan shouted she should take it off, she replied "More enthusiasm means more nudity!" When the crowd cheered, she said "It goes to show gay men need to see my ass really badly!"

Madonna backs Obama, performs Holiday under rainy clouds

New York City

Madonna finally comes back home to NYC. As Live Nation adds a second show at Madison Square Garden in November, Madonna performs two nights at a packed Yankee Stadium.

She invited DJ AVICII to play the opening act, reciprocating her appearance during his performance at the Ultra Music Festival.


After Human Nature on the first show, Madonna said "Tonight I'm not gonna show you my ass, I'm gonna show you my feelings.", and uncovered a huge "OBAMA" tattoo on her back.

She also referred to the Democratic campaign in her speech, as she said "We still have a long way to go, take that from Michelle Obama." (Michelle Obama had speeched the day before on the Democratic Convention)

Spotted in the crowd: Gwen Stefani and the other members of No Doubt. On the second show, there was Ingrid Casares, and Paris & Nicky Hilton, among many other celebrities.

The second show almost got cancelled due to hurricane alarms. Before and during the show, it rained heavily. As the crowd stood in open air, in ponchos and under umbrellas, Madonna struggled at first to perform under such weather conditions. Crew members tried to keep the stage dry to no avail. Like A Virgin was performed mostly under an umbrella. The tattoo now read "ForGive".

But the crowd was in for a surprise. After her speech, Madonna announced: "I got an extra-special treat for you tonight, because you've been standing in the rain. And because I haven't had a holiday this summer..." The crowd got the hint and went crazy as Madonna sang a few verses of Holiday.

'Don't let crazy shit happen'


Performing at the TD Garden, Madonna thanked Boston for their support throughout the years. "I've always come to Boston on my tours, and I thank you for all the support that I've gotten".

Part of her speech:

"I see flags from all around the world. Brazil, Argentina, we're gonna come there too. But for now I'm gonna enjoy being in America. As I travelled around the world I've seen some scary things, and it got me to appreciate even more that in my country, despite its imperfections, we have freedom of expression. It's OK to be gay. It's OK to be whatever religion. It's OK to be whoever you wanna be. And I hope it stays that way. Don't let crazy shit happen. Are you gonna let crazy shit happen? Fuck no!"

She also pointed out her musical director is from Boston and got him out on stage.

Madonna dedicates Masterpiece to her mother

Quebec City

The MDNA show at Plains of Abraham Site probably got the largest crowd of the tour so far. Since there were over 72,000 people at the venue, the MDNA stage was higher than usual.

Paul Oakenfold warmed up the crowd.

During her speech about tolerance, she had the audience shout "Fuck Oui" instead of "Fuck Yeah". A fan threw a little flag of Quebec on stage, which Madonna picked up and she explained that the shield referred to Joan Of Arc, one of the characters of the MDNA show.

She continued by dedicating Masterpiece to her mother, who was French-Canadian.

'I have the best job in the world'


For her second concert in North America, Madonna already crossed the border to Quebec. While on Tuesday she told the American crowd it was good to be back home, Madonna now smooched with her Canadian fans, saying she's was practically Canadian herself, referring to the roots of her mother and to the Canadians who joined her on tour.

As she continued naming nationalities of other tour members, she said that was the great thing about what she does: she gets to work with people from all over the world, she gets to entertain people from all over the world, and that's the best job in the whole world. "And you're part of it!"

She let the crowd vote whether she should put her hat back on or not (an overwhelming amount voted against). She thanked her Canadian fans for their support.

She didn't go too political this time. At the end of her speech, she asked Rocco if she had gone on long enough and as he nodded, she said "Yeah Rocco is bored, let's sing a song about love."

Remarkably, the swastika was back on Marine Le Pen's head in the Nobody Knows Me video. It seems the question mark was only shown in Nice for lawsuit reasons, but the original video is back for the American tour.

'Appreciate your Freedom!'


The day before Madonna opened her North American MDNA Tour, the Tourist Office of Philadelphia welcomed her, by tweeting that she was always free to express herself there.

In her speech she first apologized for arriving late (the show started at 10.30).

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She continued that it wasn't a coincidence that she started her US tour in the city where the Declaration of Independance was signed. She said that the one thing she learned and appreciated after touring certain countries in Eastern Europe, that she's proud that in her country there's freedom of speech. She referred to Pussy Riot and the fact that Russia doesn't allow to speak about homosexuality. "Never forget how lucky you are to live where you live and to have the freedom that you have. And don't get fat and lazy and take that freedom for granted."

The setlist remained the same as in Europe.

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