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Madonna attempts comeback surrounded by holograms of herself at Billboard Awards

Madonna was determined to come back from her career hiatus with a bang at the Billboards Awards on Wednesday night. 

And she did her best to pull out all the stops, taking to the stage surrounded by holograms of herself while performing her new single Medellin with South American singer-songwriter Maluma. 

There were even reports she spent $5 million of her own money on the theatrics. 

But despite the fancy CGI trickery and big budget, Twitter users were left a little underwhelmed.   

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Double-act: Madonna and singer-songwriter Maluma gave a rendition of their bilingual new single Medellin at Wednesday's Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas

Double-act: Madonna and singer-songwriter Maluma gave a rendition of their bilingual new single Medellin at Wednesday’s Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas

Oh, what a circus: Madonna underwhelmed this Wednesday when she took the stage with holograms of herself at the MGM Grand Garden Arena

Oh, what a circus: Madonna underwhelmed this Wednesday when she took the stage with holograms of herself at the MGM Grand Garden Arena

Each hologram was wearing one of the costumes Madonna modeled in the music video for Medellin that premiered on YouTube exactly a week before. 

Wednesday’s performance began with Madonna wearing an eye-patch and lying solo in front of some nature videos, beneath a canopy meant to resemble trees.

As she sang her portion of the song, holograms of her materialized on either side of the Material Girl, only to quickly vanish in puffs of smoke.

Maluma appeared onstage in front of an urban backdrop, with musicians playing in the upstairs windows of the ‘buildings’ behind him.

Theme: Each hologram was wearing one of the costumes Madonna modeled in the music video for Medellin, which premiered on YouTube exactly a week before

Theme: Each hologram was wearing one of the costumes Madonna modeled in the music video for Medellin, which premiered on YouTube exactly a week before

Bells and whistles: The performance began with Madonna wearing an eye-patch and singing solo in front of some nature videos, beneath a canopy meant to resemble trees

Bells and whistles: The performance began with Madonna wearing an eye-patch and singing solo in front of some nature videos, beneath a canopy meant to resemble trees

Company: As she sang her portion of the song, holograms of her materialized on either side of her, only to quickly vanish in puffs of smoke

Company: As she sang her portion of the song, holograms of her materialized on either side of her, only to quickly vanish in puffs of smoke

The hunky 25-year-old born Juan Luis Londoño Aria shook a leg for the audience in the company of another set of Madonna holograms.

Madonna herself burst through one of the doors and hoofed it around the stage with Maluma, before he took a step back and leaned against the backdrop. 

As Maluma watched, fake hail fell on Madonna and she was accompanied by a phalanx of holograms who danced with her for the crowd.

Maluma and Madonna’s performance included yet another setpiece – this one a swanky dance hall where flesh-and-blood backup dancers joined the holograms.

Dashing: The hunky 25-year-old born Juan Luis Londoño Aria shook a leg for the audience in the company of another set of Madonna holograms

Dashing: The hunky 25-year-old born Juan Luis Londoño Aria shook a leg for the audience in the company of another set of Madonna holograms

Eye-popping: As Maluma watched, fake hail fell on Madonna and she was accompanied by a phalanx of holograms who danced with her for the crowd

Eye-popping: As Maluma watched, fake hail fell on Madonna and she was accompanied by a phalanx of holograms who danced with her for the crowd

Twitter reacts to Madonna’s Medellin performance

As there was a report that Madonna had spent a pretty penny on her performance, Madonna hitting the stage was one of the most-anticipated events of the night.

And Twitter was buzzing when the 60-year-old legend hit the stage.

Several took time to poke fun at the performance of Medellin with Maluma.

One posted the iconic ‘How do you do, fellow kids?’ .GIF of Steve Buscemi from 30 Rock with the caption: Looks like madonna on stage #BBMAs.’ 

Ouch: Several users took time to poke fun at Madonna's performance of Medellin at the Billboard Music Awards on Thursday

Ouch: Several users took time to poke fun at Madonna’s performance of Medellin at the Billboard Music Awards on Thursday

Classic: One posted the iconic 'How do you do, fellow kids?' .GIF of Steve Buscemi from 30 Rock

Classic: One posted the iconic ‘How do you do, fellow kids?’ .GIF of Steve Buscemi from 30 Rock

One of the peak moments of the performance came when four different versions of Madonna from the music video were holograms on stage.

When Madonna, Maluma, and the background dancers hit the stage the computer generated images disappeared.

Some users compared the moment to Thanos making The Avengers fade away in Avengers: Infinity War while others compared it to a popular computer game as one said: “Madonna brought out The Sims.” 

The reviews are in! Many social media users were not fans of the performance

The reviews are in! Many social media users were not fans of the performance

Seeing quadruple: One of the peak moments of the performance came when four different versions of Madonna from the music video were holograms on stage

Seeing quadruple: One of the peak moments of the performance came when four different versions of Madonna from the music video were holograms on stage

Funny: Some users compared the moment to Thanos making The Avengers fade away in Avengers: Infinity War while others compared it to a popular computer game as one said: "Madonna brought out The Sims"

Funny: Some users compared the moment to Thanos making The Avengers fade away in Avengers: Infinity War while others compared it to a popular computer game as one said: “Madonna brought out The Sims”

 

Ouch: One user even used the infamous Chrissy Teigen face meme

Ouch: One user even used the infamous Chrissy Teigen face meme

 

As the duo ventured out into the audience, a couple of hologram Madonnas exploded via fireworks into a platform and began dancing.

Shortly after Madonna and Maluma made their own way up onto that platform, the holograms exploded into kaleidoscopes of red butterflies.

The two singers embraced at the end of their performance, and as Madonna thanked the audience Maluma gave her a steamy kiss on the neck.

Twitter provided some rather barbed responses to the show – one user wrote: ‘All of us watching Madonna…’ over a GIF of Chrissy Teigen cringing.

Making an entrance: As the duo ventured out into the audience, a couple of hologram Madonnas exploded via fireworks into a platform and began dancing

Making an entrance: As the duo ventured out into the audience, a couple of hologram Madonnas exploded via fireworks into a platform and began dancing 

Finale: Shortly after Madonna and Maluma made their own way up onto that platform, the holograms exploded into kaleidoscopes of red butterflies

Finale: Shortly after Madonna and Maluma made their own way up onto that platform, the holograms exploded into kaleidoscopes of red butterflies

Another tweeter was full of questions: ‘why is madonna a pirate?? Also what is happening during her performance? Am I on acid??’ 

This Monday, TMZ claimed Madonna had forked over about $5 million of her own money on the performance – but the article is no longer on the gossip website.

According to that report, Billboard was not eating any of the cost of this gig.

Madonna and Maluma dropped their single together on April 17, and it will be featured on the Material Girl’s upcoming album Madame X.

What a moment: The two singers embraced at the end of their performance, and as Madonna thanked the audience Maluma gave her a steamy kiss on the neck

What a moment: The two singers embraced at the end of their performance, and as Madonna thanked the audience Maluma gave her a steamy kiss on the neck

Details: Madonna and Maluma dropped their single together on April 17, and it will be featured on the Material Girl's upcoming album Madame X

Details: Madonna and Maluma dropped their single together on April 17, and it will be featured on the Material Girl’s upcoming album Madame X

The song is currently at its peak position of No. 18 on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart, having debuted there at No. 23. 

Due out on June 14, Madame X will be Madonna’s 14th studio album – her previous LP Rebel Heart flopped upon its release in 2015.

Her album was inspired by her time in Lisbon, where she moved in 2017 to help her now 13-year-old son David Banda pursue his ambitions in professional soccer.

‘I didn’t go to Lisbon to make a record,’ she dished during a Q&A at MTV’s London offices, explaining she was there ‘to be a soccer mom, which is a crazy story, I know.’

Moving up: The song is currently at its peak position of No. 18 on Billboard's Hot Latin Songs chart, having debuted there at No. 23

Moving up: The song is currently at its peak position of No. 18 on Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart, having debuted there at No. 23

Incoming: Due out on June 14, Madame X will be Madonna's 14th studio album - her previous LP Rebel Heart flopped upon its release in 2015

Incoming: Due out on June 14, Madame X will be Madonna’s 14th studio album – her previous LP Rebel Heart flopped upon its release in 2015

She said she eventually became ‘a little bit depressed’ with her stagnant routine, feeling she had become ‘netty-no-mates,’ according to Billboard.

Madonna’s cure was to befriend ‘artists – either painters or musicians,’ who would ‘have things called living room sessions. So everyone would congregate. People would bring wine, they would bring food, sit around the table.’

She explained: ‘And then suddenly musicians would get up and start playing instruments and singing fado music and samba music.’

History: Her album was inspired by her time in Lisbon, where she moved to help her son David Banda pursue his ambitions in professional soccer

History: Her album was inspired by her time in Lisbon, where she moved to help her son David Banda pursue his ambitions in professional soccer

The Evita star enthused that ‘Lisbon is a melting pot of culture, from Angola to Spain to Brazil to France – I had the pleasure and honor to meet musicians from all these places and be inspired by their music and let it influence me.’

Madonna shared that she was 19 years old ‘when I was given the name Madame X. So the whole story has come full-circle…. Madame X is back to her roots. She doesn’t care zero you-know-whats.’

Madge previously played the Billboard Music Awards in 2016, singing Purple Rain in memory of Prince, who had died of an accidental fentanyl overdose a month prior.

Medellin is also infamous as the home of the brutal drug kingpin Pablo Escobar, whose international cartel was named after the town.

Daily Mail UK

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