x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Madonna coming to capital ... maybe

Speculation is rife after leaked tour schedule.

:Madonna arrives on the red carpet in Toronto last month for a film she directed on Wallis Simpson, wife of the Duke of Windsor.
:Madonna arrives on the red carpet in Toronto last month for a film she directed on Wallis Simpson, wife of the Duke of Windsor.

By Marie-Louise Olson

ABU DHABI // Madonna is coming to the UAE next June to perform at Yas Arena in Abu Dhabi, according to a leak from her promoter.

The leaked document, printed on the letterhead of Live Nation, reveals the singer's 2012 world tour itinerary, which includes a concert in the UAE on June 6.

Live Nation Middle East insisted yesterday that the document was not genuine: "As much as we would love it to be real, the Madonna article going around is a hoax."

However, a music industry insider in Dubai who is close to the concert negotiations confirmed that Madonna has indeed been booked to play in Abu Dhabi on that date, and will be paid US$5 million (Dh18.4m) for the show by the Abu Dhabi promoter Flash Entertainment.

"The itinerary was originally leaked by an employee at the Live Nation office in Sydney, who was boasting about the Madonna tour to a journalist," the insider said. He said the employee had been broadcasting the end of the Sydney office's long drought of major shows.

The Madonna fan site drownedmadonna.com was the first to publish the concert document, which shows the tour being announced at a press conference on October 31 at Live Nation's headquarters in Beverly Hills.

Tyler Mervin, the managing director of Live Nation Middle East, declined to comment, as did Flash, which works with Yas Island to promote entertainment events.

Madonna began working on a new studio album this year after a two-year hiatus. Released through Live Nation, it will be her first since she left Warner Music Group after 25 years to sign a $120m contract with the promoter.

marie-louise.olson@thenational.ae