Anyone who reads this blog knows that it's no secret how much I love Lady Gaga. Not just her music, but her message, too. She promotes acceptance of yourself and others, she speaks out against homophobia, and she encourages everyone to be exactly who they want to be. Say what you will about her, but that is exactly the message our society needs today.
Monday, March 14, 2011
I love Gaga so much, actually, that I paid to go see her in concert over my Spring Break. So, on Saturday night, my mom (a rocker girl who adores the Gaga) and I headed over to Louisville, Kentucky to see what we hoped would be the show of a lifetime.
We were not disappointed.
The show was absolutely amazing. She sang, danced, played the piano, and even cracked a few jokes about the rumors that she is secretly a man. She performed all of her radio hits along with a few others. Her opening number was "Dance in the Dark" and I won't lie - it gave me chills. But not as big of chills as her piano remix of "Born This Way" - which was so gorgeous I kind of wanted to cry.
The show was full of lights, amazing video screens, and special effects that rocked the house - which, in case you were wondering, was a sold out arena packed with 20,000 people. People in jeans and t-shirts, people in outrageously bizarre costumes (I fell somewhere in the middle of those categories), and people in drag.
But along with the show, Lady Gaga also stopped for a few minutes between songs to talk to the audience about the reason behind the Monster Ball, the message she hopes to put out, and her own history with feeling like an outcast.
"I was bullied as a kid," she told the audience. "I won't lie to you. You won't forget it. You'll never forget the way it made you feel." She went on to talk about how the point wasn't to forget, but to learn to be proud of who you are. "I used to want to wear a mask to school. Now, I do wear a mask, but I wear it with pride, not fear."
She also talked a lot about "Born This Way" and how passionate she is about the song. Her message in the song is to let her listeners - no matter the race, sexuality, or gender - know that it is okay to be exactly who they are because God made them that way. Yes, she talked about God and Jesus in a move that, personally, I found very brave. Kentucky is a religious state, and I thought some might be offended by Lady Gaga's religious comments that "Jesus loves EVERYONE - whether they like boys or girls or both." But the audience cheered and applauded this. I felt proud of my peers at that moment.
Lady Gaga said the point of the Monster Ball is to give her fans a place to go where they can be who they want and know they have a "freak in [her] to be with." She told the audience on Saturday that she hoped everyone left feeling free, and that they held on to that feeling long after the show was over.
I definitely left the show feeling empowered. I left thinking about a lot of things she'd said. She was bullied, she was told she would never make it, she was called a "freak" - and now? She's one of the most famous, successful artists of our time.
Take that, bullies.
I've had my own experience with bullies, you see. Its one I will talk about tomorrow, I've decided, but I can say this in short - today, none of my bullies have made it as far as I have. The people who made me feel inferior are still in our small town, still with the same people, still immature and unhappy. And me? I'm in New York wiritng books and meeting new, amazing people ever day - like the people who read this blog.
Like I said. I'll blog about bullying tomorrow. Today it is Gaga.
I loved Lady Gaga before the concert. Now I love her so much more. I know it sounds dumb because I've never spoken to her, but I feel like she's a friend. I feel like she is a friend to all of her fans, to all the people who have felt out of place before.
I hope others discover Lady Gaga. I hope people who need her message can find her and listen to "Born This Way" and feel as empowered as I do.
And, I won't lie, I hope I can see her in concert again.