Live – The Virgin Tour - Background


Madonna's first concert tour, The Virgin Tour, promoted her first two studio albums, Madonna and Like a Virgin. After the tour was over, Madonna started recording her third studio album, True Blue. Film director Danny Kleinman, who presided over the shooting of the tour on video, submitted the footage to Warner Bros. Records, who decided to release it as a video album. Titled Live – The Virgin Tour, the video chronicled The Virgin Tour as shot at Cobo Arena in Detroit, Michigan on May 25, 1985.

Madonna, who was busy with True Blue and shooting for the comedy film Shanghai Surprise, was contacted by Kleinman to ask about her approval of the shot footage. She felt that the video "needed a proper introduction. I asked Foley darling to shoot me saying something for adding it before the concert starts." Foley, who directed the music video of her song "Live to Tell", shot an introduction which was added at the beginning of the video. It portrayed Madonna in her first image makeover, with platinum blond curls, and conservative wardrobe. Madonna wanted to include a summation of her biography—which was used at the beginning of The Virgin Tour—to be added with the footage. Hence, with the footage, Madonna's voice was heard, declaring,

"When I was young, I had a dream. I went to New York. I had a dream. I wanted to be a big star, I didn't know anybody, I wanted to sing, I wanted to dance, I wanted to do all those things, I wanted to make people happy, I wanted to be famous, I wanted everybody to love me. I worked really hard, and my dream came true."

This was followed by the concert, beginning with "Dress You Up". The performances of "Angel", "Borderline" and "Burning Up" were removed from the tracklist of the video, as Kleinman believed that Madonna's performance was not her best in them. While shooting the tour on May 25, during the performance of "Like a Virgin", a fan suddenly came up on the stage and tried to get hold of Madonna, but was swiftly whisked away by security. Kleinman decided to keep the shot, as he felt that it illustrated the fanaticism which had grown around Madonna, and her popularity. The live performances of "Like a Virgin" and "Dress You Up" were released as music video on MTV to promote the video album. Both videos were nominated for "Best Choreography" at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards. However, Madonna lost the award to Prince and The Revolution with their video "Raspberry Beret."

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