Madonna Claps Back at Lawsuit Over Delayed Concert Start Times

Madonna has clapped back at the recent class action lawsuit filed on behalf of dissatisfied fans who were upset that her concerts started later than scheduled. The pop star’s lawyers filed a motion Wednesday urging the federal judge to dismiss the case, claiming that having “trouble getting a ride home” or needing “to wake up early the next day for work” are not cognizable injuries, Billboard reports.

The lawsuit centers around three January performances that took place in New York. Following the concerts, ticket buyers Michael Fellows and Jonathan Hadden filed a complain in Brooklyn federal court, claiming that Madonna breached her contract with concert goers, violated New York state laws, and engaged in false advertising by starting her performance more than two hours later than scheduled. The suit also named Live Nation and Barclays Center, where the shows took place, as defendants.

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As part of the initial lawsuit, the plaintiffs said they would “would not have paid for their tickets” to a December 13th show “had they known that the concerts would start after 10:30 p.m.,” adding that there was a failure “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.” They went on to claim harm due to needing to wake up early for work and having trouble finding transportation home.


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Madonna’s lawyers have found issue with the suit’s reasoning. “Plaintiffs speculate that ticketholders who left the venue after 1:00 a.m. might have had trouble getting a ride home or might have needed to wake up early the next day for work,” wrote Madonna’s lawyers in the new motion. “That is not a cognizable injury.”

The motion also argues that the plaintiffs left the concerts satisfied, not harmed. Hadden reportedly “raved” about Madonna’s performance, posting that it was “incredible, as always!” on his Facebook page. “In other words, the concert met or exceeded his expectations,” Madonna’s lawyers claim.

“Plaintiffs do not allege Madonna’s performance was subpar, that her performance was worth less than what they paid, or that they left the concert before watching her entire performance,” the lawyers wrote. “Indeed, plaintiffs do not plead any injury that they themselves suffered by spending the night at an ‘incredible’ concert.”


In response to the claims of false advertising, the lawyers for both Madonna and Live Nation argued that most attendees understand headliners often take the stage at a later time than what’s printed on the ticket.

“Nowhere did Defendants advertise that Madonna would take the stage at 8:30 p.m., and no reasonable concertgoer — and certainly no Madonna fan — would expect the headline act at a major arena concert to take the stage at the ticketed event time,” they wrote in Wednesday’s response. “Rather, a reasonable concertgoer would understand that the venue’s doors will open at or before the ticketed time, one or more opening acts may perform while attendees arrive and make their way to their seats and before the headline act takes the stage, and the headline act will take the stage later in the evening.”

Despite the hoopla, Madonna is still on the road for her “Celebration Tour,” which continues through late April. Read our review of the tour’s kick off, and get tickets here. She’s also set to play the largest show of her career on May 4th at Copacabana Beach in Brasil.