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Madonna leaves fans ‘deflated’ after late start means Celebration tour show cut short

Singer kicked off her Celebration world tour in London over the weekend

Isobel Lewis
Monday 16 October 2023 10:41 BST
Madonna's daughter Lourdes Leon stuns crowd at Brava Madrid Music Festival
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Madonna has faced criticism after a late start meant she was forced to cut the setlist during the second show of her Celebration tour.

The legendary “Vogue” singer kicked off her greatest hits tour in London over the weekend, with an explosive opening night at London’s O2 Arena working through her extensive back catalogue.

You can read The Independent’s five-star review of opening night here.

However, Sunday (15 October) night’s follow-up show wasn’t such a smooth experience.

Madonna, 65, began the show late and had to contend with the O2’s 11pm curfew, with some fans saying she had started performing as long as 35 minutes after she was scheduled to begin.

As a result, the show ended with her 1992 song “Rain”, cutting off her songs "B**** I’m Madonna”, “Give Me All Your Luvin’”, “Celebration” and “Music” from the setlist.

On social media, fans shared their frustration, saying that they felt “let down” as the show ended with a ballad and missed out the tour’s title track altogether.

“Madonna started really late tonight and finished after singing ‘Rain’. I paid a fortune to come to London, stay in a hotel and the tickets. Really not good!” one fan wrote.

Another tweeted that Madonna was “very late”, leading the show to “finish early”.

“I’m sorry but it’s only the second show of the tour, and she’s cheating the audience out of a full performance by being late,” another commenter wrote, adding: “This is unacceptable.”

One attendee wrote that they had left the gig “deflated”. “Show was shortened from last night. No encore and came on very late,” they commented.

“Really upset that Madonna decided to go on late and as a result was cut off and we missed the last few songs,” another fan tweeted.

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One tweet read: “She was an hour late. Raced through the songs, some of which were def shorter than I expect she had intended. No explanation to the 20K+ ppl waiting in the crowd.”

The Independent has contacted Madonna’s representatives for comment.

During the opening night of the Celebration tour, Madonna addressed the life-threatening bacterial infection she suffered mere months ago. The tour had originally been scheduled to begin in the US in August, but the dates were rescheduled due to her health scare.

On stage, Madonna told fans: “I didn’t think I’d make it. I forgot five days of my life… or my death.”

The musician and Evita star will play two more dates at the O2 on Tuesday (17 October) and Wednesday (18 October) this week before heading out on tour across Europe.

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