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RICARDO GOMES Madonna
Madonna kicked off New York City Pride with a star-studded "Celebration."
On Thursday night, the pop icon put on "WoW, Finally Enough Love," an impressive variety show for fans at Terminal 5 in Hell's Kitchen, a predominately gay neighborhood in Manhattan.
The spectacle kicked off with appearances from RuPaul's Drag Race alums Bob the Drag Queen — who emceed — as well as Violet Chachki, Laganja Estranja and Pixie Aventura, who performed to some of Madge's biggest hits, from "Vogue" to "Justify My Love." Also making a cameo throughout the evening: Madonna's 16-year-old son David, who joined for some comedy and dance.
Midway through the show, Madonna joined the queens onstage, where the infamously tardy star cracked a joke about being on time for once, before addressing the packed crowd, which included stars like Zachary Quinto, Jonathan Groff, Billy Eichner and Julia Fox, as well as drag stars Gottmik and Gigi Goode.
RICARDO GOMES Madonna and Tokischa
"New York City, you know we are the greatest city in the world, for so many reasons," said Madonna, who partnered with NFT company WoW (World of Women) for the event. "I was asked to perform at many Pride events around the world — but I would never, ever turn down New York City, because this is the city where I was born. I came out of my mother's vagina in Bay City, Michigan, but I was born in New York City!"
The longtime LGBTQ ally added: "It's a very weak crowd. Is the ketamine wearing off? Anyway, in case you didn't know, the reason that New York is so great is that I'm pretty sure that the first queer human evolved from this city. I think they came from the caves of Central Park West. I've heard this conspiracy theory, that I don't believe is a conspiracy theory. Anyways, not only is New York City the best place in the world because of the queer people here. Let me tell you something, if you can make it here, then you must be queer. Did you hear what I said? [sings in 'New York, New York' melody] 'If you can make it here / Then you probably are so queer.' There's one more reason New York City is the best city in the world. One more very important reason. We have the best pizza. Yes, give it up for the pizza in New York!"
RICARDO GOMES Madonna
Throughout the rest of the hour-long show — which celebrated Madonna's new 16-song remix album Finally Enough Love —Madonna went on to perform with the drag queens, as well as queer artists like Saucy Santana and Tokischa, with whom she shared a make-out session.
After closing the show with a performance of her 2009 track "Celebration," Madonna bid the crowd goodbye, saying, "We love you — I love you," before walking off to "Holiday."
The venue was transformed into a Material Girl mecca and was plastered with the queen of pop's career-spanning album and single art; featured song title-inspired cocktails from Belvedere (like the "Into the Groove"); "Sticky & Sweet"-themed snacks; a M·A·C Cosmetics VIVA Glam station; a photo booth activation; montages highlighting clips from her most iconic music videos; and exclusive merch from the one-night-only event, which was also sponsored by The Sandbox and Linktree.