Responding to a lawsuit from two concertgoers that Madonna, entertainment company Live Nation and Brooklyn's Barclays Center had caused real legal harm by misrepresenting the start time for her show on Dec. 13, 2023, the word coming down from Madonna's camp is: "We intend to defend this case vigorously."
There had been silence from Madonna's management and Live Nation since the court filing last week. In court documents, the two fans claimed, among other things, that the two-hour delay for her Dec. 13 show was consistent with her past tardy behavior and that this constituted "false advertising, negligent misrepresentation, and unfair and deceptive trade practices." The two also claim that this also happened at the Dec. 14 and Dec. 16 Barclays Center shows.
"The shows opened in North America at Barclays in Brooklyn as planned, with the exception of a technical issue December 13th during soundcheck," Madonna’s reps and Live Nation said in a joint statement. "This caused a delay that was well documented in press reports at the time. We intend to defend this case vigorously."
The two ticketholders, Michael Fellows and Jonathan Hadden, claimed that the 2-hour delay — a 10:30 pm start instead of the 8:30 pm start — would cause real harm. "Defendants failed to provide any notice to the ticketholders that the concerts would start much later than the start time printed on the ticket and as advertised," attorneys for the two men wrote.
The references to famous late starts to Madonna concerts was emphasized in the attorneys' filing, as Billboard added, "calling out her 2016 Rebel Heart tour, her 2019-2020 Madame X Tour, and prior tours, where Madonna continuously started her concerts over two hours late."
As to those press reports about the delay on Dec. 13, the kick-off incident was widely believed to be a technical issue during soundcheck which she worked through almost until doors opened. Various sources said she continued to have sound issues during the show, exclaiming to the audience there was an "echo" in her ear.
As for that three-hour delay? A source told People at the time that it was only "an hour delay." Fans had taken to social media that night and were hurling late hate left and right — until the show started which then garnered rave reviews.
Madonna's Celebration World Tour had 79 dates attached, which will wrap up in Mexico on April 24.