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Madonna News - April 2013

Madonna facing ban from Russia?

Madonna could be banned from returning to Russia – after she spoke out in support of gay rights and the feminist punk group Pussy Riot.

The singing superstar performed two shows in Moscow and St Petersburg last August as part of MDNA world tour, and while on stage took the chance to voice her opinions on gay rights and backed the Pussy Riot singers jailed for a protest against President Putin.

Now the foreign ministry has ruled that Madonna’s visa did not allow her to make money during her visit to the country, Russian newspaper Izvestia reported.

The singer faces a fine of up to £10,445 and could be refused future visas to enter Russia.

Officials responded to a claim by St Petersburg legislator Vitaly Milonov, that her concert constituted “illegal commercial activity.”

The foreign ministry said in statement that Madonna failed to obtain a work permit, adding that since the singer was invited by the culture ministry on a single-entry three month visa, the purpose of her visit should have been limited to “cultural ties”.

Milonov said: “Those who applied for a visa for Louise Ciccone [the singer’s birth name is Madonna Louise Ciccone] face a fine of 500,000 rubles. It has to be determined whether she filed the documents herself.

“The question of the legality of Madonna’s visit to our country will also come up, and next time it will be a lot more difficult to get a visa.”

But since Madonna was on tour, and not hired to give the performance, there is no contract that could serve as the basis of a work visa.

Yevgeny Finkelshtein, the president of tour organisers PMI said: “All over the world, there is such a concept as an artist’s visa. The work visa that Milonov was insisting on would take half a year to obtain and would require a work contract.”

Malawi president’s attack on Madonna said to be a ‘goof’

President Joyce Banda had not approved official statement labelling Madonna a bully, leaked email says.

Joyce Banda, the president of Malawi, is said to be furious at her public relations staff for making a scathing attack on Madonna without her knowledge or approval.

The press officer concerned has apparently admitted: “Oops, I goofed, the president is mad with me.”

The official statement from Malawi’s state house that labelled the singer a bully who demands VIP treatment and dishonestly exaggerates her contribution to the country made headlines around the world this week.

But on Friday it emerged that, while many in Malawi are believed to support the sentiments expressed, Banda herself never saw or signed off on the colourful statement. “It looks like she was not consulted on this, nor did the press team realise the implications of their action in picking up a fight with Madonna,” said a source close to Sanjika Palace, the presidential residence on the outskirts of the commercial city Blantyre.

Another source was quoted by the BBC as describing Banda as “incandescent with anger” over the mix-up. read more →

Madonna dumps Kabbalah from Raising Malawi

Madonna has informed the United States government that the charitable organization she runs has severed all its ties with the controversial religion she practices, Kabbalah.

The pop superstar, 54, filed a federal tax document outlining how Raising Malawi, the non-profit organization that supports impoverished children in the African nation, dumped its Kabballah backed board of directors.

Instead, the “Material Girl” has installed her longtime manager, Guy Oseary, as one of their replacements, has confirmed. read more →

Instagram: Madonna answers President Banda

“The Revolution of Love starts with Good actions not Evil Tongue!”

Madonna in Malawi

“This is Edna. A 55 year old woman who just learned to read and write. She is dancing because her granddaughter is able to attend one of the schools we built.”

Madonna in Malawi

“Here I am standing in front of one of 10 schools I built with Build On in Malawi! Lies have no legs. Only the truth can stand!”

Madonna in Malawi

“President Banda stop spreading lies about me! I’m trying to help the children of Malawi!”

Madonna in Malawi

Madonna via Instagram

Madonna Remains Deeply Committed to the Children of Malawi

There have been many reports regarding Madonna’s recent visit to Malawi. Some of these reports include inaccurate information and accusations by the Malawian Government on Madonna’s character and the work of her foundation Raising Malawi. Despite the accusations, Madonna and her organization Raising Malawi remains committed to the health and education of the children of Malawi.

“I was very happy to visit with the children of Malawi earlier this month and to see with my own eyes the ten new primary schools in Kasungu province that Raising Malawi and buildOn completed this past year. These schools are now educating more than 4,800 children with girls attending in equal numbers. These children who were formerly learning outside on the ground, in unsafe buildings or not at all, now get to attend classes on a daily basis. My children and I were overjoyed to visit these schools and see what amazing progress has been made. I will continue to follow through on my commitment to help educate the children of Malawi. I’m saddened that Malawi’s President Joyce Banda has chosen to release lies about what we’ve accomplished, my intentions, how I personally conducted myself while visiting Malawi and other untruths. I have no intentions of being distracted by these ridiculous allegations. I came to Malawi seven years ago with honorable intentions. I returned earlier this month to view the new schools we built. I did not ever ask or demand speial treatment at the airport or elsewhere during my visit. I will not be distracted or discouraged by other people’s political agendas. I made a promise to the children of Malawi and I am keeping that promise” commented Madonna. read more →

Madonna earns the wrath of Joyce Banda – full statement

“Claims and misgivings have been expressed by Pop Star, Madonna and her agents, against the Malawi Government and its leadership for not giving her the attention and courtesy that she thinks she merits and deserves during her recent trip to Malawi.

According to the claims, Madonna feels that the Malawi Government and its leadership should have abandoned everything and attended to her because she believes she is a music star turned benefactor who is doing Malawi good.

Besides, in the feeling of Madonna, the Malawi Government and its leadership should have rolled out a red carpet and blast the 21-gun salute in her honour because she believes that as a musician, the whiff of whose repute flies across international boundaries, she automatically is candidate for VVIP treatment.

For not receiving the attention and the graces that she believes she deserved, Madonna believes someone, not lesser in disposition than the President’s sister, Mrs. Anjimile Mtila-Oponyo, has been pulling the strings against her following their earlier fallout bordering on a labour dispute.

State House has noted these claims and misgivings. State House has followed the debate incidental to these claims with keen interest, and would wish to respond as follows to put the record straight:

1. Neither the President nor any official in her government denied Madonna any attention or courtesy during her recent visit to Malawi because as far as the administration is concerned there is no defined attention and courtesy that must be followed in respect of her. read more →

Madonna: A Transformational Exhibition

from This Thursday, a traveling exhibition featuring awesome unseen photos of Madonna from the ’80s will arrive at the W Hotel in Times Square. Called MADONNA: A Transformational Exhibition, it features images by renowned photographers Richard Corman and George DuBose curated by Rock Paper Photo. The “transformational” aspect comes via graffiti artist Alec Monopoly, who we’re told will be live-tagging select images outside of the hotel during the exhibition’s private launch event (If you want, you can RSVP for a chance to get tickets here).

While that should be cool, we’re a little more interested in the photographs themselves–many of which were taken in Madge’s very own Lower East Side apartment building, before she was famous. In an age when so many pop stars are manufactured head to toe, these photos are proof that the look she became known for (well, the first one at least) was all her own. We chatted with the photographer of these images, Richard Corman, to get the scoop on how those photos came about, what Madonna was like back in the day, and what it was like apprenticing for Richard Avedon.

How did you first meet Madonna? How did you end up shooting her?
I met Madonna through my mother, who was a major casting director in New York and she was casting a movie for Martin Scorsese called The Last Temptation of Christ. Madonna was this kid that was dinging around New York City that somebody had told my mom about and she came in and auditioned for the Virgin Mary. At the time I had just left apprenticing at Avedon’s studio and I was always on the lookout for interesting people to photograph. She didn’t get the part, but my mother called and she was just vehement that I get in touch with this young woman who she’d met because she said she’d never met anybody like her, that she was an absolute original, and that she was just so charismatic and off the charts, so that’s how I was introduced to Madonna. I was given her phone number and the next day we met and we spoke. She knew that I was interested in photographing her and we talked about what I wanted to do what, she wanted to do, and that’s how it all began. read more →