It’s still going on. The “Celebration” world tour starts in London in October.
From there, Madonna, who celebrated her 65th birthday last week in Portugal, will be on the road until April next year, playing 78 dates around the globe, concluding in Mexico City.
The burning question is: can she even make it?
Just over a month ago, the aging singer was rushed to the hospital after she was found unresponsive.
She was said to be suffering from septic shock due to a severe bacterial infection. She was rushed to intensive care and reportedly resuscitated with Narcan, a potent drug commonly used to treat drug overdoses (although there’s no indication that Madonna needed it for that reason).
There was a point where her helpers — and her kids — thought she might not make it.
Soon after, she was seen, apparently still frail, walking very slowly around Manhattan’s Upper East Side, where she owns a $40 million 13-bedroom townhouse.
She was promised that she would take the recovery seriously and would “follow the doctor’s orders” and not rush back to work.
And yet this week we learned that plans for Madonna’s sparkling return to the world stage are well advanced.
It’s still going on. The Celebration world tour kicks off in London in October. From then on, Madonna, who celebrated her 65th birthday in Portugal last week (pictured with her boyfriend), will be on the road until April next year, playing 78 dates around the globe.
The burning question is: can she even make it? Just over a month ago, the aging singer was rushed to the hospital after she was found unresponsive. She was promised that she would take the recovery seriously. And yet this week we learned that plans for her grand return to the world stage are well advanced. (Pictured: Madonna on stage in 1990).
Back from a hilarious birthday bash in Lisbon with her latest young beau – boxer Joshua Popper is 29 – she has reportedly set up camp at Long Island’s Nassau Coliseum, where she maintains a rigorous rehearsal schedule before heading to London in late September. (Opening night is October 14th).
Together with her team of dancers and choreographer Damien Jalet, she is supposed to work every day. Producer Jamie King, a longtime collaborator, oversees everything.
I’m told the shows, which were only two weeks away when she fell ill and were later rescheduled, have been extensively revised to accommodate Madonna’s fitness and stamina. The result is that she will dance less.
Nonetheless, the fact that the tour is taking place at all this year is met with open dismay in some quarters.
A source with knowledge of her team exclusively told : “She was advised not to do the tour and rest.” I’ve heard she was told it would be wise to take a year off. That was a hard no from Madonna.”
“She firmly believes in herself as an icon,” added the source. “It’s all, ‘Bitch, I’m Madonna’. She believes that she is invincible and that she is still 24 years old. “Her ego is so big that she thinks she’ll dance through the pain and do it anyway.”
Such willful persistence is hardly surprising from an aged pop diva, but this time it seems there are genuine fears for her health.
“I don’t see how she can do it without seriously harming herself,” the source said. “It’s not about whether she can pull off a performance, it’s about practically pulling off almost 80 performances in a row.” It would be a challenge for someone in their 20s.”
However, a Madonna source told Page Six that she is “extremely healthy” and would love to get back to work – but won’t punish herself.
“She’s more focused on being the frontrunner than trying to keep up with the backing dancers,” they said. “Her team’s main concern is to make sure she’s healthy and can get through the Tour from start to finish.”
The fact that the tour is taking place at all this year is met with open dismay by some. A source with knowledge of her team exclusively told : ‘She was advised not to do the tour.’ I have heard she was told it would be wise to take a year off.’
Such willful persistence is hardly surprising from an aged pop diva, but this time it seems there are genuine fears for her health. “I don’t see how she can do it without seriously harming herself,” the source said.
There was always a lot of driving on this tour.
In a bizarre announcement video in January – in which Madonna inexplicably snogged married actor Jack Black – she revealed that instead of promoting a new album, she would be plundering her catalog of “four decades of music,” hence “The Celebration Tour.” . ‘.
Some say it’s her attempt to cement her status as an industry icon – on the order of Cher and Diana Ross – that has stood the test of time.
And so success isn’t a given for Madonna, who is willing to pull out all the stops, including the still vague plan to bring Britney Spears onstage at one or more of the scheduled Los Angeles performances.
Such a stunt would no doubt please fans who remember the couple’s scandalous kiss onstage at the 2003 VMAs – though whether Spears’ impending divorce has complicated things since remains to be seen.
The tour also represents a kind of countermeasure for Madonna, whose perceived reluctance to accept the natural aging process has recently been increasingly ridiculed.
Fair enough or not, the star’s seeming obsession with the plastic surgeon’s knife, as well as her newfound fondness for bondage gear and wearing lingerie in public, has given her an air of despair as she ages.
I’ve also been told that the one-time Queen of Pop — known for her willingness to feud with other singers — is keen to show Beyonce, who is currently on a sold-out tour herself, “how it’s done.”
Then there’s the little money thing.
Though the “Material Girl” singer has amassed a staggering $850 million net worth since she debuted in 1983, she’s reportedly still drawn to the prospect of a huge payday.
There was always a lot of driving on this tour. Some say it’s her attempt to cement her status as an industry icon – on the order of Cher and Diana Ross – that has stood the test of time. The tour also represents a kind of countermeasure for Madonna, whose perceived reluctance to accept the natural aging process has recently been increasingly ridiculed.
I’ve also been told that the former Queen of Pop, who is known for her willingness to feud with other singers, is keen to show Beyoncé “how it’s done.”
If all goes according to plan, the Celebration Tour will gross $200 million in ticket sales alone – and then there’s the associated merch and the expected surge in streaming of their old hits.
For all of these reasons, Madonna obviously couldn’t resist the prospect of hitting the streets again in the wake of her near-fatal illness.
As she wrote in a statement on Instagram last month, “My first thought when I woke up in the hospital was my kids.” “My second thought was that I didn’t want to disappoint anyone who bought tickets to my tour.”
Even though she was seriously ill, Madonna’s manager Guy Oseary gave her an indication of where her commercial priorities lie.
“At this point we have to pause all commitments, including the tour,” he said in a statement following her hospitalization in late June. “We’ll let you know more details as soon as we have them, including a new tour start date and the postponed shows.”
My source said, “There’s a certain amount of pressure on her notoriety.” It depends so much on her being able to perform, which means you just find someone who says your plans are OK. they demand [approval] from a doctor and you get it.’
“The choreography has been arranged so that it doesn’t have to do full dance routines. “It will still look like a very spectacular show, but there will be opportunities for them to rest,” the source continued. “They usually do that with artists who can’t dance.” “Mick Jagger does that too – he’ll move very quickly and then rest for a while.”
However, the source added a note of caution: “Everyone is very concerned that she will pick up a new injury or, more likely, aggravate one of her existing conditions.”
It would not be the first time.
Her “Madame” At the last few shows, she wore knee braces and used a cane.
The source said: “Everyone is very concerned that she will pick up a new injury or, more likely, an aggravation of one of her existing conditions.”
“The pain I’m in right now is overwhelming and I need to rest and follow the doctor’s orders so I can come back stronger and better,” she said in a statement at the time.
Sources say if only she would seek such sensible advice now.
“It doesn’t matter how you train or what the doctors give you for support — like cortisone shots for the pain — she’s proven she has limits.” “This tour just feels like an awful choice,” my source said . “People fear she’s breaking away from her legacy because she doesn’t accept that she’s only human.”
And how cruelly ironic that would be: by desperately pursuing a tour aimed at boosting her reputation, she risks the very opposite.