Madonna arrived in Israel and kicked off her hotly anticipated world tour with a star-studded concert in Bethlehem.
She arrived amid tight security on a chartered El Al flight from New York, accompanied by partner Brahim Zaibat, her four children and an entourage of 70, local media reported.
Also with her – three wise men. No, Guy Ritchie wasn’t one of them.
Friday’s show in Bethlehem is the first of 84 dates across Europe and the Americas. She picked Bethlehem because she feels a special connection between herself and the real Madonna.
“I believe that in a previous life, I was Madonna, THE Madonna,” she reportedly told a Rabbi in Tel Aviv. “Though, I’m far more talented that she was. I don’t think she could sing and dance like I do.
Madonna, born a Catholic and now a devotee of Kabbalah, also spent a great deal of time with Jewish leaders.
“I’m a Catholic, but I’m also a Jew. I’m Cathew.”
The tour — Madonna’s first since her wildly successful “Sticky and Sweet” outing in 2008 and 2009 — will support her new album “MDNA.” She told WWN that MDNA stands for “Madonna Does Noah and Abraham.”
She last performed in Israel in 2009, on the Sticky and Sweet tour. Some said Jesus would have rolled over in his grave if her heard her play – luckily, he was in heaven at the time.
During the Bethlehem show, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu strapped on a guitar and shredded… her music.
Saturday night marks the start of the week-long Jewish holiday of Shavuot, or the Feast of Weeks.
Israeli public radio said that Madonna was expected to spend much of the holiday “resting and making short trips,” with rehearsals on the eve of her shows. She will also celebrate the holiday by having sex with as many Jews as she can.
Madonna opened her concert in Bethlehem by tossing frankincense, myrrh and fake gold on her fans and playing this song: