LGBTQ icon Madonna turned up at a historic New York City gay bar on New Year’s Eve to give a once-in-a-lifetime intimate performance.
The Stonewall Inn in NYC’s Greenwich Village is known as “the birthplace of the modern Gay Rights movement” due to the infamous riots that took place there on June 28, 1969, after the New York City Police Department’s Public Morals Division raided what it deemed a nonconformist establishment.
In 2019, the bar will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the significant event and had previously announced that Madonna was going to be the ambassador for the commemoration. However, no one thought she would be making an appearance at the Stonewall this soon.
The Material Girl appeared onstage shortly after midnight to give a speech and perform for about 15 minutes. She was sporting black clothing from head to toe — leather motorcycle jacket, top, ankle-length jeans, and heels — with shiny chains hanging all over and a shiny bow in her hair.
Wearing eyeglasses which she joked about, she told the small crowd that she has “never performed on a stage this small” before reading her prepared dialogue from rainbow notecards.
“You survived 2018? Are you happy to say ‘Goodbye b***h?'” she asked the audience, according to Variety.
— Madonna (@Madonna) January 1, 2019
“I stand here proudly at the place where pride began, the legendary Stonewall Inn, on the birth of the new year. We come together tonight to celebrate 50 years of revolution.”
Madonna then praised the community’s role in helping to eliminate “hatred, discrimination, and, most of all, indifference.”
— Cr@zy4Mad*nna (@cr_nna) January 1, 2019
The 60-year-old entertainer turned the focus onto herself for a moment to say that she was “happy” to return to New York City where she began her “journey as an artist,” a town “where dreams are born and forged out of fire and brought to life.”
“If we truly look and truly take the time to get to know one another, we would find that we all bleed the same color and we all need to love and be loved… Let’s take a moment to reflect on how we can bring more love and peace into 2019,” she said, according to a video featuring a portion of the night posted on YouTube.
The lucky folks witnessing Madonna’s rare appearance cheered loudly.
— THE STONEWALL INN (The Official Page) (@TheStonewallNYC) January 1, 2019
She then took off her glasses and led the audience in a sing-along of her hit tune “Like a Prayer,” which was accompanied by her adopted 13-year-old son, David Banda, on a red acoustic guitar. The young man, who is now taller than his mother, looked adorable in a black top hat and black bow tie. Madonna made sure that her son got in some singing time, putting her microphone in front of his mouth.
She then joked with the audience a little bit, talking to the roughly 150 members of the crowd. Some people shouted out songs that they wanted her to perform next, however, she decided to sing “one of her favorite songs” instead.
“Show this man some love,” she requested of the audience for her son before they together launched into a touching a cappella version of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love.”
— Plus Magazine (@HIVPlusMag) January 1, 2019