March 20, 2016
Madonna Ends Controversial World Tour: 'God Forbid a Mother Should Miss Her Son'
Madonna, plagued by bad press for occasional late start times, for allegedly performing while tipsy, and most recently for accidentally exposing a fan's breast onstage, wrapped her Rebel Heart world tour with two shows in Sydney, Australia, on Saturday and Sunday.
At Saturday's show, which was performed on time, Madonna joked with her fans of the drinking rumors, "Here's the thing: I don't even drink. But because I've been accused of being an alcoholic so many times, I'm gonna start drinking. So f*ck you!"
Referring to her testy custody battle with ex-husband Guy Ritchie over their son Rocco, Madonna pushed back against persistent tabloid claims that she was having some sort of emotional collapse. "I don't wanna be accused of having a meltdown... God forbid a mother should miss her son."
She thanked the sold-out audience for taking her antics in proper context, saying, "I'm glad you all have a sense of humor, because if I didn't have one, I wouldn't survive."
Madonna had previously lashed out on Instagram against claims that her shows in Brisbane were "half-empty," pointing out that the media had used pre-show snaps to illustrate the point. She wrote, "Next time@take a photo when the show stars."
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On the bright side, the tour pushed Madonna's lifetime touring gross past the $1 billion mark.
Reviews summed up the final Sydney shows as being "on time and on-point." One Sydney review, acknowledging Madonna's bad press, said, "Like other longstanding members of the superstar club, fans want to keep her going. The only ones who don't, don't actually go to Madonna concerts."
Both Sydney shows were filmed for a future Blu-ray release.