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Madonna Interview : Esquire Magazine

FATHER: You’re getting racy? .. .

MADONNA: Dad, I’m not getting racy — I’ve been racy…

FATHER: You can’t hold it down a little?

MADONNA: No. Would you? Because that would be compromising our artistic integrity.

FATHER: Of course… [Pause.] Do you undress in this performance?

MADONNA: Nooo! [Drawn out and loud.] Of course I don’t!

FATHER: Well, whatever you guys can get tickets for…

MADONNA: Dad, I can get you tickets for any night you want.

Madonna is onstage in Detroit. There is an ocean of applause as she comes out to speak after the show.

MADONNA: I said it last night and I’ll say it again: There’s no place like home! [Cheers, applause.] And there’s nobody like this man — there’s nobody like my father! [Applause as her father is called onstage and comes forward to take her hand. Cheers as the crowd cover the first part of her next sentence.] …And I worship the ground that he walks on. [She kneels down and as salaam, half in mockery; he is aghast and gestures to her to get up quickly.] And this is his birthday, and I thought maybe thirty thousand people could wish him a happy birthday… [Crowd goes wild, and so drowns out most of her next sentence.]… And I was wondering if you could sing it with me. [She starts “Happy Birthday,” and the crowd joins in.]

Madonna is in her dressing room — her father enters with her stepmother.

STEPMOTHER: …Never thought I’d see you kneel at his feet….

MADONNA: Never thought I would, either.

FATHER: I was honored. A little taken aback, but honored.

MADONNA: Well, I thought I had to make up for the fact that I didn’t go shopping for a birthday present.

[Father laughs.] Weren’t the sets beautiful?… Aren’t my dancers great?

FATHER: It was all great. A couple of little scenes there were a little—

MADONNA: X-rated?

FATHER: We could do without them —burlesque-

MADONNA [indignant]: Dad! You don’t understand, they all lead somewhere—

FATHER: It’s arty.

MADONNA: It’s got nothing to do with art. It’s the journey you take…. You can’t get to one place without going
through another place… Like growing up…

She was six years old when her mother died, and the void did not depart as the years went by, for her mother had died of cancer.

In a hotel room with Sandra Bernhard.

MADONNA: I had those dreams after my mother died; for a five-year period, that’s all I dreamed about, that people were jumping on me and strangling me, and I was constantly screaming for my father. But no sound would come out.