Madonna scores knockout at ‘event’ at Worcester Centrum
Madonna’s Reinvention Tour is without question the summer concert to beat.
The matriarch of pop pulled out all the stops for her first of four sold-out shows at the Worcester Centrum Centre – her only New England engagements.
Her 1-hour and 45-minute show (better described as an event) ran the gamut of her mercurial career from “Material Girl” to “American Life” and nearly everywhere in between.
Filled top to bottom with flawless choreography, elaborate costume changes, movable stages, dazzling lighting and politically charged videos, the show made it almost easy to miss the fact that Madonna has never sounded better or come off as more musical.
Aside from the athletic choreography and necessary lip syncing of her show-opening classic “Vogue” and the newer track “Nobody Knows Me,” Madonna sang astonishingly well on every song that followed.
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The title “Nobody Knows Me” perhaps best describes the queen of reinvention’s show. This, more than any other tour before, has been Madonna’s chance to truly show herself off – and I don’t mean with coned bras. She sang “Frozen” from her “Ray of Light” CD faultlessly, danced in perfect time with her backups on “Express Yourself,” and – get this – played guitar with surprising success on several tracks including “Burning Up” from her 1983 self-titled debut.
Without fail, she put her political agenda on the table for all to see during “American Life,” which ended with video of George Bush and Saddam Hussein arm in arm being covered in a curtain of blood. But despite the politics, pizzazz and her jaw dropping physical fitness, it was her music that took center stage. “This song is so old, even I don’t remember the words,” said Madonna before turning out an enormously crowd-pleasing sing along rendition of “Material Girl.”
In fact, the crowd was on its feet from beginning to end, supporting the material girl on tracks like “Hollywood,” from “American Life,” “Deeper and Deeper” from 1992’s “Erotica” and “Die Another Day” the title song from the 2002 James Bond film.
Other hits included the “American Life” song “Nobody Fails,” and “Don’t Tell Me” from 2000’s “Music,” as well as classics “Into the Groove” and “Papa Don’t Preach.” But of all her hits it was the terrifically rousing rendition of “Like A Prayer” that elicited the biggest cheers and the heartiest singing from the crowd.
Driven by a “reinvented” hip hop beat and lifted up by Madonna’s most powerful singing of the night, “Like a Prayer” left every fan grinning with joy – ear to ear.
Yet, as quickly as she lifted the crowd to joy she brought them to tears with a touching version of John Lennon’s “Imagine” backed by terrifying images of children – children starving, children in arms, children dead and wounded in wartime, children alone.
Finally, Madonna dedicated her old hit “Crazy For You” to her “dedicated fans that stuck with (her) for the past 20 years,” before rounding out her show with an elaborately staged rendition of “Music” and ending with her oldie but goodie “Holiday” with confetti raining down onto the roaring crowd.
Article by Philip D’Amour, The Republican