Madonna performs as clown, not drunk: rep
Madonna clowned around during her Thursday performance in Australia when she donned a pink wig, red nose, and striped tights for a show, titled “Tears of a Clown,” at Melbourne’s The Forum. The performance was not part of Madonna’s ongoing Rebel Heart arena tour, instead taking place as a smaller, one-off set for 1,500 attendees. Madonna teased the appearance as far back as March 6, and confirmed the planned show’s name in a tweet posted Tuesday.
After tabloid reports surfaced that the star was drunk during the show, a representative for Madonna told EW in a statement, “She was not drunk, and as promised; Madonna had one cosmo on stage. Nothing more. Nothing less.”
The reports are surfacing in the midst of Madonna’s ongoing custody battle for son Rocco with ex-husband Guy Richie. “Everybody knows the saga of me and my son Rocco. It’s not a fun story to tell or think about,” Madonna told the audience during the show, referencing the legal case, which is currently being reviewed by a high court judge in London. “I probably would have enjoyed myself a bit more on this tour if he hadn’t disappeared so suddenly. I’m going to dedicate this song to him.”
She then launched into “Intervention” from the 2003 album American Life as photos of her son displayed on a screen behind her.
Madonna reportedly performed a few songs from her back catalog live for the first time, and apparently didn’t arrive until nearly three hours after the set’s scheduled start, though she took to the stage in typical Madonna fashion: riding a miniature tricycle while dressed as a clown.
The performance also included a cover of Stephen Sondheim’s “Send in the Clowns,” from the 1973 musical A Little Night Music.
Madonna also spoke of the residency shows performed by Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, and Britney Spears, telling the Melbourne audience that she’d “rather die” than work in Las Vegas.
With grosses from a few shows still unreported, Madonna’s Rebel Heart tour has grossed over $100 million worldwide since kicking off last September. The Rebel Heart tour ends on March 20 in Sydney.