It’s not looking pretty in Monster-land.
This past weekend, it was announced that Lady Gaga has ended her partnership with her longtime creative director, Laurieann Gibson.
The move is a shocking one for Lady Gaga, who is known for her loyalty to her friends in the Haus of Gaga. Indeed, Gibson has been with Gaga since the pre-Fame days, and is the choreographer behind all her big hits. Fans can rightly be concerned about this new direction, as Gibson should definitely be given credit for having a hand in essentially everything Gaga has done up until now in her videos.
Gaga, for all her vocal prowess, has said herself that she’s not a dancer, and Gibson has been able to work with that and still choreograph a distinctive style in “Just Dance” “Poker Face” “LoveGame” “Paparazzi” “Bad Romance” “Telephone” “Judas” “Alejandro” and “Born This Way.” (Yup, you read that correctly. It’s pretty much all the hits).
The reasons for the break up have not been officially commented on, but problems first became apparent to fans during the filming of the “Judas” (which Gibson also co-directed) video this past spring, where the religious imagery, particularly Lady Gaga as a sexified Mary Magdalene, made Gibson uncomfortable. “At one point, there was two completely different views and after the third glass of wine, I was like, ‘Listen, I don’t want lightning to strike me. I believe in the Gospel and I’m not going there,” Gibson said at the time.
Is this a battle of the egos? Many sources point to Gibson’s growing celebrity profile as the cause of the troubles — Gibson got her own show on E! this year, The Dance Scene, and she may not have been able to give Gaga the full attention she presumably demanded.
Also troubling was Gibson’s response to fans after the minimalist “Edge of Glory” video. She tweeted, “listen u disrespectful f**k they had an issue on set I don’t lie!!!!!” and “creative Changes happen always educate ignorant Monster’s!!!” It’s obvious Lady Gaga would be none too pleased about anyone saying anything negative to her fans, as they, and her relationship with them, is her life blood. Interestingly, Gibson recently deleted her Twitter account.
I personally think the kiss of death may have been Gibson’s Madonna comments, where she told the L.A. Times, “Listen, [Madonna] should be bitter because I did it [modeling Gaga’s visual aesthetic on Madonna] on purpose, and you can quote me. I did it on purpose because for all those kids who believe that you can’t, I wanted to let them feel that you can. And that’s what I represent, that’s what Gags represents.”
While Gaga obviously draws some inspiration for both her look and sound from Her Madgesty, it’s a comparison she’s not wanting to encourage lately, as Internet haters have continually harped on her borrowing of earlier artists’ work.
Lady Gaga has tweeted that Richard Jackson, Gibson’s former #2, is now her new choreographer. “Warming up with my choreographer Richard Jackson, singing + pinning garments till the last moment. So excited for The Night, gonna Marry It.” It’ll be interesting to see the video for “Marry The Night” (which Gaga directed) released in the next few weeks, and how it differs from her previous work with Gibson.
This news comes at the end of a relatively disappointing year for Gaga. Although “Born This Way” was the number one song for six consecutive weeks, her other singles off Born This Way (most particularly “Judas”) have failed to hit number one. Of course, success at her level is all relative; she has had four top-ten hits in 2011 and cleaned up at the European Music Awards last week. But for many, this change signals serious trouble in paradise.
Readers: What do you think? Will new voices help Gaga find hers? Or is this a troubling development for Monster fans?