Portal:Madonna (entertainer)

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Madonna (born Madonna Louise Ciccone on August 16, 1958) is an American recording artist, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983. She followed it with a series of albums in which she found immense popularity by pushing the boundaries of lyrical content in mainstream popular music and imagery in her music videos, which became a fixture on MTV. Throughout her career, many of her songs have hit number one on the record charts, including "Like a Virgin", "Papa Don't Preach", "Like a Prayer", "Vogue", "Frozen", "Music", "Hung Up", and "4 Minutes". Madonna has been praised by critics for her diverse musical productions while at the same time serving as a lightning rod for religious controversy.

Her career was further enhanced by film appearances that began in 1979, despite mixed commentary. She won critical acclaim and a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for her role in Evita (1996), but has received harsh feedback for other film roles. Madonna's other ventures include being a fashion designer, children's book author, film director and producer, and owner of her own recording company Maverick corporation, as a joint venture with Time Warner. She has been acclaimed as a businesswoman, and in 2007, she signed an unprecedented US $120 million contract with Live Nation.

Madonna has sold more than 300 million records worldwide and is recognized as the world's top-selling female recording artist of all time by the Guinness World Records. According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), she is the best-selling female rock artist of the 20th century and the second top-selling female artist in the United States, behind Barbra Streisand, with 64 million certified albums. In 2008, Billboard magazine ranked Madonna at number two, behind only The Beatles, on the Billboard Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists, making her the most successful solo artist in the history of the chart. She was also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in the same year. Considered to be one of the most influential figures in contemporary music, Madonna is known for continuously reinventing both her music and image, and for retaining a standard of autonomy within the recording industry. She is recognized as an inspiration among numerous music artists.

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The Sticky & Sweet Tour was the eighth worldwide concert tour by American singer-songwriter Madonna to support her eleventh studio album Hard Candy. It was Madonna's first major venture from her new recording and business deal with Live Nation. Announcements for the tour happened as early as February 2008 with dates for the UK and the American venues being announced. However, though initially planned, the tour failed to visit Australia like her past three tours, due to financial problems and the recession. Costume designer Arianne Phillips designed the costumes, supported by a number of renowned famous designers and brands. The stage for the main show was planned almost the same way as Madonna's 2006 Confessions Tour. After the tour was over in 2008, Madonna announced plans of resuming the tour in 2009, to play in previously unventured territories. The second leg, however, did not go to the United States.

The Sticky & Sweet Tour broke many records in terms of its ticket sales, commercial gross and audience attendance. After the first leg, it became the highest grossing tour by a solo artist by earning $282 million, breaking the previous record by Madonna herself with the Confessions Tour. The second leg of the tour was equally successful. Overall Madonna performed to over 3.5 million fans in 32 countries, grossing a total of US$408 million, making it also the second highest grossing tour of all time and the highest grossing tour by a solo artist. At the 2009 Billboard Touring Awards, the Sticky & Sweet Tour won the Top Tour and Top Draw prizes, which acknowledge the highest-grossing and highest-attended tours of the year, respectively. Madonna's manager Guy Oseary won the Top Manager award.

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True Blue is the third studio album by American singer-songwriter Madonna, released on June 30, 1986 by Sire Records. Madonna worked with Stephen Bray and Patrick Leonard on the album while co-writing all the songs. Deemed as Madonna's most girlish album, True Blue deals with her visions of love, work, dreams as well as disappointments and was inspired by her then husband Sean Penn, to whom Madonna dedicated the album. Musically, the songs on the album took a different direction from her previous endeavours, incorporating classical music in order to engage an older audience who had been skeptical of her music while featuring instrumentation including acoustic guitars, drums, synthesizers and Cuban musical instruments. The album features songs about love, freedom and in the case of "Papa Don't Preach", social issues like teenage pregnancy.

Five singles were released from the album: "Live to Tell", "Papa Don't Preach", "Open Your Heart", which went on to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart as well as "True Blue" and "La Isla Bonita", which reached the top-five. With the singles and their accompanying music videos Madonna began to change her image from that of a "boy-toy" to a more sophisticated matured look. "Papa Don't Preach" generated media controversy with some critics condemning Madonna for encouraging teenage pregnancy while others complimented her for her seemingly pro-life stance.

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"Like a Virgin" is a song by American recording artist Madonna from her sophomore album of the same name. It was released on November 6, 1984 by Sire Records, as the first single from the album. The song appears on the greatest hits compilation albums The Immaculate Collection (1990) and Celebration (2009). It was written by Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly and produced by Nile Rodgers. Steinberg said that the song was inspired by his personal experiences of romance. The song was chosen for Madonna by Michael Ostin of Warner Bros. Records after listening to a demo sung by Kelly. However, Rodgers felt that the song did not have a great hook and was not suitable for Madonna. He changed his opinion after the hook was stuck in his mind and decided to record it with her.

Musically "Like a Virgin" is a dance-oriented song, composed of two hooks. Madonna's voice is heard in a high register while a continuous arrangement of drums are heard along the bassline. The lyrics of the song is ambiguous and consists of hidden innuendo. In sexual terms, the lyrics can be interpreted in different ways for different people. "Like a Virgin" received positive reviews from contemporary as well as old critics, who frequently called it as one of the defining songs for Madonna. It became her first number-one single on the Billboard Hot 100, while reaching the top of the charts in Australia, Canada and Japan and the top-ten of the other countries.

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Madonna singing "Ray of Light" in Sofia 2008


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