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Material Girl’s metamorphosis into Her Madgesty, The Queen of Pop


Review: Emma Whitelaw

IT'S BEEN a while since Madonna first graced the stage at Wembley, almost 20 years in fact. But after an extraordinarily high-energy show for her Reinvention Tour last Wednesday (August 25, 2004), it appears the years have had anything but an adverse effect on her performance.

Before the show even started, the audience were advised over the loudspeakers that this was to be an artistic piece. There was no support act and no encore; it was more like a theatrical piece than a pop concert.

Artistically defined by its dramatic undertones, the shows opening sequence was a blend of David Lynch / Andy Warhol-esque imagery displayed on large moving screens, and Madonna’s recital of The Beast Within, which features outtakes from the Book of Revelation.

It was followed by a dance routine that would put most yoga bunnies to shame, before Her Madgesty finally appeared in all her glory.

Wearing a sequined bustier and black hot pants she showed off her flexible prowess to possibly her most famous of tunes, Vogue.

Much to the crowds' delight, Madonna performed an array of songs from her staggeringly long-standing and successful career, including Nobody Knows Me, American Life, Express Yourself, and a visually stunning performance of her exquisite masterpiece, Frozen.

With a string of sell-out dates for her Re-invention Tour, Madonna has shown the world once and for all that she is no longer a mere Material Girl.

She has long since proven her self to be a master of her art. And, unlike some of her contemporary counterparts, Madonna makes no use of mime.

With a truly phenomenal voice, she has the ability to hold every note and still flit about the stage.

At times, it was impossible to believe that the woman before us was a 45-year-old mother of two!

Nor did the energy levels drop, as she continued on with the song which she once swore she’d never perform again, Material Girl.

She probably also swore she’d never do it playing guitar, or wear khaki, but there’s always a first for everything!

With many a costume change, which included kilts and shirts proclaiming that 'Brits do it Better', Madonna pleased the crowd to no end.

Often letting her adorers do the singing for her; the hits kept on coming with such tracks as Hollywood, Hanky Panky, Deeper and Deeper, Die Another Day, Like A Prayer, a cover of John Lennon’s epic, Imagine, and the list goes on!

The show was a far cry from those by her formerly vampish, vixen-self, given that there was no crotch-grabbing, cone-shaped bras, or profanity on stage - bu then, she no longer needs the element of shock to amuse and engage her audience.

Yet, Madonna is still very much a provocative performer. What appears on stage now is the polished talent of a veteran artist.

Despite toning it down, Madonna has still received criticism for her latest tour, this time for the outrageously expensive ticket prices.

The finale was nothing short of spectacular and, as the ticker-tape fell on Holiday, the regal one bid her loving audience adieu and left the stage for what is rumored to be her last world tour.

Ever the notorious one, Madonna may never shake her risqué reputation, yet it is that which I believe has established her as one of the most exciting icons of our time.

I do hope she keeps up the good work for yet another 20 years!

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