Featured, Features, Live, Live Review

Live Review: Madonna, Aviva Stadium, 24 July 2012

It rained it poured, they screamed they roared.
Live Review by Daithí Ó Drisceoil

Last night, July 24th, saw the tour de force that is Madonna’s MDNA Tour roll into Aviva Stadium, Dublin. In typical Irish summer fashion, most of the audience wore rain macks and ponchos to salute the arrival of the Queen Bee. ‘Why does it always rain when I come to Ireland…..WTF?’ she pondered aloud to an ecstatic crowd.

Dj Allesso got most spectators into the groove while others ran for the last remaining rain macks on sale. At 9.10, things kicked off with ‘The Act Of Contrition’ leading into ‘Girl Gone Wild’. From the word ‘go’ it’s clear that Madge means business. For a woman of 53, soon to be 54 years, she was very much an equal to her 20 something dancer counterparts, in terms of stage agility and energy.

With a cinematic first act, including the Tarantino tinged ‘Gang Bang’ and a tasty remix of ‘Hung Up’, it’s clear to see that Madonna is distancing herself from her former husband Guy Ritchie. She’s taken us to the dancefloor of hell, exercised our dance muscles and exorcised her own personal demons.

Although this is far from a greatest hits tour, old favourite ‘Express Yourself’ was the opener of the second act. This is when the crowd really began to forget about the downpour. Cheekily mixed with ‘Born This Way’ and ‘She’s Not Me’ Madge confirms that she is still top of the game.

The momentum took a slower pace for act 3 which saw Basque region drummers re-interpret her songs. In typical ‘b section format’ Madonna spoke to the crowd, asking if there were a lot of good catholics…bad catholics…..spiritual people on the Emerald Isle? She informed us of her love for Ireland, hatred of rain and asked us all to pray for some dry spell. In reality, energy was being stored for what was about to come.

If you weren’t a gym member going to this show, you were about to get a grueling workout. Act 4 and 5 brought us from a kinky boudoir to an all out rave! Favourites such as Vogue, Human Nature and Like A Prayer were performed to a frenzied, rain soaked crowd. Set closer ‘Celebration’ really ended things with a bang we as shouted for more!

Some argue that prices were too high for recession time Ireland. Of course, they were expensive, but in terms of production, length, energy, you just about got what you paid for. At no point did the Material Girl give an impression of not wanting to be up there on stage in the rain and wind. She kept spirits up and seemed genuinely happy to be here in Dublin. Could a 53 year old Irish mammy perform the same feat?

Regardless of age, if you like her or loathe her, one must admit that she is the master of what she does…and that is being an exuberant entertainer, who can catchy songs and perform them to the max.

Related posts:

  1. Setlist: Madonna, Aviva Stadium, 24 July 2012
  2. Live Review: Bruce Springsteen, RDS, 17 July 2012
  3. Live Review: Swedish House Mafia, Phoenix Park, 7 July 2012
  4. Live Review: Die Antwoord, Academy Dublin, 3 July 2012
  5. Live Review: The Stone Roses, Phoenix Park, 5 July 2012


  1. I don’t know what gig you were at, but the Madonna gig I went to was half full (as the stadium was not exactly overflowing) with very bored and at times slightly embarrassed people.

    Opening with the symbolsim of incense and bell toning was an indication of what was in store. A lot of the same old same old.

    The whole gun scene was at first just distasteful and then blew up into full blown bordom, as it went on and on and on. At some point she tried to have indecent relations with an automatic rifle. Surely rifles have rights too!

    Her arse bared, even if it does look great (I’m a middle aged mammy myself by the way) for a whole five minutes was total cringe territory. As I said it looks great, but a fifty odd year old woman trying to get a shock reaction to her arse is just pathetic.

    We laugh at kids when they do these things, believing that one day, they’ll grow up and look back at those things and laugh at themselves. Madonna however is completely devoid of any sense of humour which just makes her earnest and self important little display all the more cringeworthy.

    When will she give up on her religious and sex hangups. Get over it. Whatever oppressive attitudes she grew up with as a child can’t be any wose than what we grew up with. She’s a project for some therapist somewhere.

    • Japes01

      Im not sure about how filled the stadium was, but after viewing this toir on youtube it is my most favorite Madonna tour yet. As for showing her arsing such , people are making such a big deal about it as if she hasnt been showing it for the past 25 years….its madonna being madonna and id be disappointed if she caved into her critics. And it does look pretty good. The only critisisms I have are tge guitar segments….i find them boring but if I could even play a little….i guess I would want to show off too…and she can catch her breath. I wish all the aegist would just hand it to her that she still is sexy…apparantly her 24 yr old boyfriend thinks so..and im sorry if you are not attracted to someone it is impossible to fake it for more than a month.

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