Gig tickets are expensive, but tickets to see Madonna? They’re extremely expensive. Seats for Her Madgesty’s upcoming residency at the London Palladium range from £140 to £500, while VIP packages will set you back more than £1,000. There’s no way that a pop show can be worth that price, right? I mean, we’re not all oligarchs: there can’t be many Londoners who can blithely spaff away half a grand on a night out. On top of that, when the tour launched in New York in September, there were complaints that Madonna left audiences waiting hours. She might be pop royalty, but that doesn’t mean you’re happy to miss the last tube.
The thing is, in this one instance, shelling out a large portion of your rent money for a ticket to a gig might actually be condonable. And before you accuse us of being 1 percenters with no grip on reality, let us justify that statement. Here’s why it’s definitely, DEFINITELY worth paying £500 to see Madonna...
1. It’s Madonna as you’ve never seen her before
The thrill of seeing a megastar in a small, 2,000-capacity venue is quite unlike any other gig-going experience and Madonna knows it. While info about the ins and outs of the ‘Madame X’ tour are fairly unknown, thanks to a mobile phone ban, we’ve heard talk that the ‘Like a Virgin’ singer engages with audiences like never before: telling jokes, stealing fans’ drinks, sitting on people’s knees and selling Polaroid selfies for a €1,000 donation to charity. It’s meant to be a brand new type of pop concert that blends theatre and variety with big-budget props and stage sets. It’s also one that could lead to surprises and one-off performances of forgotten hits, while providing an intimacy that rarely occurs between superstar musicians and their fans. Unless you’re Roman Abramovich’s son or something.
2. You get a lot of Madge for your wedge
While Madonna has been late for a number of the performances, it appears that the ‘Madame X’ show is nearly three hours long, which makes it quite unlike your usual 90-minute arena shebang. This is mucho Madge for your moolah. Plus, we have stricter licensing laws in UK for live music so she probably won’t be able to get away with that funny business here (hopefully).
3. It could be your last chance
While it’ll take more than ageing to stop Madonna, the 61-year-old Queen of Pop has previously said how tiring she finds extensive touring. That’s why the ‘Madame X’ tour consists entirely of theatre shows (albeit 86 of them). Still, with a number of cancellations due to injury, it’s not unfair to suggest that her touring schedule could slow down considerably after 2020. Don’t say we didn’t warn ya.
4. Her last album is great
With an act as hit-laden as Madonna, you’d be disappointed if she only performed songs from her latest record. And while the setlist is brimming with Madgebangers, there’s also plenty from recent album ‘Madame X’. Luckily it’s weird, innovative and brilliant. It’ll be thrilling to see how she brings the sultry ‘Medellin’ and the West African-inflected ‘Batuka’ to life.
5. She’s performing some songs for the first time in years
Given that this is a different kind of show, Madonna has dived into her archive this time. After more than a decade of being absent from her live repertoire, ‘American Life’ and the majestic ‘Frozen’ appear to be getting their time in the spotlight again. There’s even an interlude to 1991’s ‘Rescue Me’. Don’t fret, though, you can expect ‘Like a Prayer’, ‘Vogue’ and a deluge of other hits, too.
6. Is it really that much money?
People routinely spend £1,000 on new phones. Likewise, dinner out in London with a bottle of wine (or two) can cost upward of £200. And let’s not pretend that the private members’ club you’re telling yourself is ‘totally worth it as it has a gym’ is anything other than a way to get over the fact that London’s wild property market has priced you out of ever owning anywhere more central than Zone 4. Does shelling out a few hundred quid for Madonna tickets seem that absurd? Absolutely, yes it does, but as she said: ‘People spend $300 on crazy things all the time, things like handbags. So work all year, scrape the money together, and come to my show. I’m worth it.’
7. …and to be fair, you don’t even need to spend £500
While most of the 15 night run is sold out, you can still snag handfuls of face-value tickets. There’s even some around the £250 mark, plus they’re legit: you don’t even need to buy them from some guy named Dave you’ve found on Gumtree, who may or may not steal all your money. If you do go, we only hope it ends up being a night to cherish.
Madonna plays the London Palladium on select dates from Mon Jan 27-Feb 16, with tickets available here. Check out our guide to the best gigs taking place in February.