A primer on Madonna's Rebel Heart Tour

Rebel Heart Tour 2015

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Miami’s loss is Montreal’s gain. After an early reshuffling of dates, the incomparable Madonna will kick off her Rebel Heart Tour not in South Beach, as originally planned, but at the Bell Centre on Wednesday and Thursday. The 64-date world tour is the American pop star’s first since 2012’s MDNA Tour, which rolled through here in August of that year.

Always the mother of reinvention, it’s hard to predict what the artful provocateur has cooked up for her upcoming shows in support of her Rebel Heart album, released in March. There’s still a chance to be among the first to find out: tickets for both Bell Centre shows remain available on promoter Evenko’s website.

1. So why was the Miami show moved, paving the way for a Montreal première? In an official statement, the artist herself said the first five dates — in Miami, Atlanta and Puerto Rico — were rescheduled because: “As my fans already know, the show has to be perfect. Assembling all the elements will require more time than we realized.”

2. Once again, Madonna has entrusted local multimedia studio Moment Factory with providing visuals. They previously teamed up on the MDNA tour, as well as her Super Bowl halftime show appearance in 2012. Former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson had a small cameo on the album, and will appear in video form at the show.

3. The forward-thinking fashionista will strike a pose in a number of designer costumes made exclusively for the tour. Called a “murderer’s row of fashion talent” by Women’s Wear Daily, Moschino’s Jeremy Scott, Gucci’s Alessandro Michele, Alexander Wang, Prada, Miu Miu, Fausto Puglisi, Swarovski and Nicolas Jebran will be among those outfitting the star.

4. Not that Madonna has ever lacked motivation, but if this were sports, it would be said she is entering her contract year. This tour will be the last of a 10-year, $120-million deal with Live Nation she signed in 2007.

5. The lead-up to the release of the Rebel Heart album did not go according to plan. Last December, most of the album was illegally leaked online, resulting in an emergency official release of six songs on Dec. 20, months earlier than planned. Then, at her Brit Awards performance in February, Madonna tumbled down a flight of stairs after one of her dancers yanked on her oversized cape a little too hard. (The designer of the dangerous garment, Giorgio Armani, blamed the singer for the accident.)

6. Montrealers will get an exclusive opening act in the form of producer and DJ Diplo. The American was one of many hotshot producers who worked on Rebel Heart, although those who listened to the radio this summer likely know him best for Lean On, a song from his Major Lazer project, and Where Are Ü Now, which he did with Skrillex and Justin Bieber. Following Wednesday’s show, Diplo will be spinning at an after-party at the nearby supper club Soubois. Comedy fans may want to head down to New York for Madonna’s shows there next week, where Amy Schumer will assume warm-up duties.


Madonna performs Wednesday, Sept. 9 and Thursday, Sept. 10 at 8 p.m. at the Bell Centre, with Diplo. Tickets cost $52.50 to $385 via Evenko (514-790-2525; evenko.ca).



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