The Fame Ball tour

The Fame Ball Tour
Lady Gaga
Associated album The Fame
Start date March 12, 2009
End date September 29, 2009
Legs 10
Shows 24 in North America
29 in Europe
9 in Oceania
8 in Asia
70 Total
Lady Gaga tour chronology
The Fame Ball Tour
The Monster Ball Tour

The Fame Ball Tour was the debut concert tour by American recording artist Lady Gaga, in support of her debut studio album The Fame (2008). North American shows began in March, followed by dates in Oceania and a solo trek through Europe. Dates in Asia soon followed, as well as two performances at England's V Festival and two shows in North America that had been postponed from April. Gaga described the tour as a traveling museum show incorporating artist Andy Warhol's pop-performance art concept. Tickets were distributed for charity also. Alternate versions of the show with minimal variations were planned by Gaga to accommodate different venues.

The show consisted of four segments, with each segment being followed by a video interlude to the next segment, and it ended with an encore. The set list consisted of songs from her debut album only. Gaga appeared on the stage in new costumes including an innovative dress made entirely of bubbles and premiered an unreleased song called "Future Love". An alternate set list with minor changes were performed after the first North American leg of the tour. The show has received critical acclaim with critics complimenting her vocal clarity and fashion sense as well as her ability to pull off theatrics like a professional artist.


The tour was officially announced on January 12, 2009 through Gaga's official MySpace page. It was her first headlining tour; she has previously served as opening act for New Kids on the Block's New Kids on the Block: Live tour, as well as The Pussycat Dolls' World Domination Tour.[1] Gaga stated, "I consider what I do to be more of an Andy Warhol concept: pop performance art, multimedia, fashion, technology, video, film. And it's all coming together, and it's going to be traveling museum show."[2] Gaga started planning for the show while on the tour with The Pussycat Dolls.[3] In an interview with MTV News, she described the tour as,

"It's not really a tour, it's more of a traveling party. I want it to be an entire experience from [the] minute you walk in [the] front door to [the] minute I begin to sing. And when it's all over, everyone's going to press rewind and relive it again. [...] It's going to be as if you're walking into New York circa 1974: There's an art installation in the lobby, a DJ spinning your favorite records in the main room, and then the most haunting performance that you've ever seen on the stage. [...] I'm on the phone every minute of every day, talking to people, being creative, planning this Ball, and my tour manager is constantly saying, 'Come on, we have to go, we've got to go right now,' [...] But to me, the Ball is so important. I want so much to make every depression dollar that everyone spends on my show worth it. And, yeah, I'm paying a lot for it — out of my own pocket. But that's OK. I just don't care about money."[3]

Gaga prepared three versions of her show to cater to different sizes of the venues she played. In an interview with Billboard she said,

"I am so mental and sleepless and excited for this tour, [...] This is so different than anything you've seen from me in the past year. What's fantastic about [the show] was I was able to plan it while I was on another tour that was on a much smaller scale, opening for the Dolls. This is going to be, like, the ultimate creative orgasm for me 'cause I'm ready to move on. I'm not restricted to a certain structure for my show anymore. No limitations. I'm free. [...] I want to have a clear schedule of the dimensions for each venue so that we can properly execute all the technology and visuals. I need to mentally prepare days in advance if things are going to be taken out; otherwise, I won't have a good show...Every show's gonna be an A show by the time I'm done screaming at everyone – 'Hang it! Hang everything! Find a place to hang it!' That's gonna be my motto."[4]

The set list consisted of songs from her debut album mainly, but some new songs like "Fashion" from the Confessions of a Shopaholic soundtrack were also considered.[4] In May, during an interview with Edmonton Sun Gaga announced that the tour would continue through European festivals in summer. She also declared plans for a bigger North American tour including Canada. Gaga explained that the show is supposed to be much bigger than the previous version. She said, "Oh, you have no idea, [...] The tour that we're about to announce is such a dream that I have to pinch myself almost every day to remind myself that it's happening."[5]

Concert synopsis

Lady Gaga riding a vespa while performing "Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)" (left), and wearing a yellow dress for "Just Dance" (right).

The show is mainly divided into four parts with the last part being the encore. The main show began with a video introduction called "The Heart" where Gaga appeared as alter-ego Candy Warhol.[6] She was shown dressing up and displayed the symbol of a pink heart on her t-shirt and said "My name is Lady Gaga, and this is my Haus".[7] The video was projected on a giant screen in front of the stage. As the video approached towards the end, a countdown from ten to one happened, Gaga's face was shown wearing the video sunglasses, and flames engulfed the screen as it dropped. Gaga appeared in the middle of the stage being surrounded by her dancers holding glass encrusted plates which camouflage them. She wore a futuristic black dress in geometric patterns with a triangular piece on her right breast and peplum.[8] DJ Space Cowboy was present at a corner, playing the backing music.[7] Gaga came out in the center as the plates rolled around and started singing "Paparazzi".[9] The performance ends with continuous clicking of the camera. Gaga comes to the top of the pillar and sings a combination of "Starstruck" and "LoveGame" as she is joined by her dancers in tracks and jackets and hands Gaga her trademark disco stick. After "LoveGame", she talks a monologue about the year "3009". And says that "The kids came out of New York and shot the paparazzi." followed by saying "It was a thousand years before when the monster first entered the city, vanished for our hearts and for our brains and for our faces (referencing to the three video interludes of the tour)" and "we knew we could co-exist with this monster with our MUSIC!!! With our art and with our fashion. My name is Lady Gaga." and tells the crowd she feels "beautiful and dirty rich" and sang "Beautiful, Dirty, Rich". This leads to the end of the first part wherein a video introduction called "The Brain" starts with Gaga appearing again as Candy Warhol and brushing her hair.[9] After the video ends, Gaga appears on the stage in a black and white leotard with high-pointed "puff" shoulders and lightning shaped symbols,[8] while riding on a similarly colored vespa.[6] She then starts singing "The Fame". This is followed by a speech. Gaga said she's been "travelling the whole world, but when I get back, I can still smell the stench of greed." And then she performs "Money Honey" with the dancers who are wearing backpacks. "Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)" starts immediately, accompanied by hand-waving and Gaga wore a hat made of toppled dominoes.[8][9]

Lady Gaga performing "Beautiful, Dirty, Rich" in a tinfoil tutu (left), and playing on a keytar during "Money Honey" (right) in a London show.

Gaga then leaves the stage only to appear shortly after in a dress completely made of plastic bubbles.[9] She sits in front of a glass piano and starts singing an acoustic version of "Poker Face". She sometimes puts her leg on the piano and even plays it with her stilettos. And then, thanks the audience and surprises them by performing an unreleased and new song called "Future Love" whose lyrics referenced far-off galaxies, mechanical hearts and constellations.[10] She was surrounded by a glowing mannequin while singing the song.[11] The stage had a blue setting amidst mechanical cloudings. Gaga left for a costume change as the third video interlude titled The Face starts. After the video ended, she then came on the stage wearing a tutu shaped dress with pointed shoulder pads and peplum. Her dancers were clad in Louis Vuitton Steven Sprouse printed trousers which matched Gaga's shoes.[8] The backdrop changed to show blinking disco lights and Gaga stood in the center wearing her video sunglasses which display the line "Pop Music Will Never Be Low Brow". A remix of the intro for "Just Dance" started and Gaga was joined by her dancers on stage. When the song shifts to the bridge, Gaga once again is handed her disco stick and performs the bridge with it. The ending shifts to a remixed version of the song. Then Gaga and the dancers, joined by DJ Space Cowboy or DJ Nicodemus, take a bow in front of the audience. Gaga comes back with her dance to perform the encore. The encore of the tour consisted of "Boys, Boys, Boys" and the original version of "Poker Face". Gaga was dressed in a khaki leotard embellished with crystals. She wore an admiral's cap and gloves on her hands, both were decorated with the word Gaga on them.[8]

Notable changes from Oceania shows

Since the Fame Ball show in Auckland, New Zealand, Gaga performed a different setlist during the rest of the tour, involving outfit changes as well. "Paparazzi", "LoveGame", and "Beautiful, Dirty, Rich" were performed in a similar, this time tinfoil tutu with a triangular piece. "The Fame" and "Money Honey" was then followed by "Boys Boys Boys" – all three songs were performed in a glittering silver leotard with small pointy wings, riding a similarly colored vespa. "Just Dance" and "Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say)" were performed in the yellow dress from the American leg of the tour. After performing "Brown Eyes" (replacing "Future Love") and "Poker Face" on the piano, Gaga closed the show with the album version of "Poker Face", wearing a nude corseted leotard embelished with crystals.[10]


The Fame Ball Tour received acclaim from critics. Whitney Pastorek from Entertainment Weekly gave a mixed review of the concert saying, "Her onstage banter was at times a bit silly ("I travel the whole world, and when I come home, I can still smell the stench of greed") and the visuals occasionally lacking in coherent theme, but her voice was strong and refreshingly free of overbearing tracking vocals. For all her cocky bluster, perhaps the most undeniable aspect of GaGa's talent is this: The girl can, and does, sing." The show was described to be a "sartorial experimentation that it made Rocky Horror look like cotillion. One presumed the Lady approved – and somewhere, to be sure, Andy Warhol stirred in his grave."[7] Sheri Linden from Yahoo! gave a positive review of the concert saying "Gaga's first theater tour is a hot ticket – and the Lady did not disappoint. Borrowing from Madonna, Grace Jones, David Bowie and Daryl Hannah's "Blade Runner" replicant, Gaga put on a compelling show revolving around her mysterious persona, a trio of leather-jacketed dancers, multiple costume changes and props and a lone DJ providing musical accompaniment."[12] Christopher Muther from The Boston Globe reviewed the concert in House of Blues and said "The combination of song and spectacle was crowd-pleasing and exhilarating. Her club-ready songs were delivered by a woman who is clearly studied, intelligent, and talented."[13] Lynn Saxberg from Ottawa Citizen gave a positive review of the concert at Bronson Centre in Ottawa and said, "Accompanied by a DJ who also played a funky electric guitar, the curvy dynamo (Gaga and Space Cowboy) fronted one of wildest spectacles ever mounted at Bronson Centre, an action-packed circus of sound, lights, video images, fog and choreography. Though heavy on theatrics, there was no skimping on the music." She also commented on Gaga's fashion sense and style in her costumes by saying, "In an hour, Gaga proved her star power by packing in all her hits, displaying influences that ranged from Motown to 80s pop, and exhibiting a fearless fashion sense in several costume changes, none of which covered her bum."[14]

During the first North American leg, Gaga closed the show with "Poker Face" in a khaki leotard and an admiral's cap (left), while during later shows, she performed it in a nude corsated leotard (right).

Andy Downing from Chicago Tribune was impressed by the show at House of Blues and said "The work is paying off. Just weeks into her first nationwide headlining tour, the 22-year-old New Yorker [...] already commands the stage like a seasoned pro."[9] Jill Menze from Billboard also gave a positive review for the performance and complimented songs like "Just Dance", LoveGame", Poker Face", "Boys, Boys, Boys" and the fame obsessed "Paparazzi". The reviewer also said that "[From] her chart success, Lady Gaga has proven herself to be an of-the-moment pop sensation. Dig deeper, and it’s clear she’s versatile and talented enough to have staying power."[15] Mikel Wood from Rolling Stone also gave a positive review saying "The tongue-in-cheek tabloid-victim shtick that provides some laughs on The Fame grew somewhat tiresome at the Wiltern, especially when the singer started spewing half-baked media-studies nonsense like, 'Some say Lady Gaga is a lie, and they’re right: I am a lie, and every day I kill to make it true.' Fortunately, this is a woman who knows how to lighten a mood: Within 10 minutes or so, she’d donned a flesh-colored leotard and a bedazzled admiral’s cap and was rhyming 'boys in cars' with 'buy us drinks in bars."[16] On March 13, 2009 Gaga was presented with a plaque from the Recording Industry Association of America by social blogger Perez Hilton commemorating three million sales of her debut single "Just Dance", during her performance at the Wiltern Theatre. This show was also attended by rapper Kanye West.[16] Craig Rosen from The Hollywood Reporter said that "Lady Gaga showed she's a serious contender to Madonna's crown Friday at the Wiltern. She might be a relative newcomer, but the artist born Stefani Joanne Germanotta commanded the stage with a royal air during her hourlong set, at times even sporting a glowing scepter."[11]

Opening acts

Set list

Tour dates

Date City Country Venue
North America[2][18][19]
March 12, 2009 San Diego United States House of Blues
March 13, 2009 Los Angeles Wiltern Theatre
March 14, 2009 San Francisco The Mezzanine
March 16, 2009 Seattle Showbox at the Market
March 17, 2009 Portland Wonder Ballroom
March 18, 2009 Vancouver Canada Commodore Ballroom
March 21, 2009 Englewood United States Gothic Theater
March 23, 2009 Minneapolis Fine Line Music Cafe
March 24, 2009 Chicago House of Blues
March 25, 2009 Royal Oak Royal Oak Music Theatre
March 26, 2009 Kitchener Canada Elements Nightclub
March 27, 2009 Ottawa Bronson Centre Theatre
March 28, 2009 Montreal Métropolis
March 30, 2009 Boston United States House of Blues
April 4, 2009[A] Palm Springs Oasis Hall
April 6, 2009 Orlando House of Blues
April 7, 2009 Tampa The Ritz Ybor
April 8, 2009 Fort Lauderdale Revolution Live
April 9, 2009 Atlanta Center Stage Theater
April 11, 2009[B] Palm Springs Oasis Hall
April 25, 2009 Moscow Russia Famous
April 28, 2009[C] Stuttgart Germany Club Zapata
North America[18]
May 1, 2009 Philadelphia United States Electric Factory
May 2, 2009 New York City Terminal 5
May 3, 2009[D] Agawam Northern Star Arena
May 4, 2009[E] Boston House of Blues
May 6, 2009[F] Austin Austin Music Hall
May 8, 2009[G] Chula Vista Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre
May 9, 2009[H] Irvine Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre
May 10, 2009[I] West Sacramento Raley Field
June 8, 2009 Tokyo Japan Shibuya-AX
June 14, 2009 Clarke Quay Singapore The Dome on Merchant Loop
June 16, 2009 Seoul South Korea Club Answer
North America[20]
June 19, 2009 Toronto Canada Kool Haus
June 26, 2009[J] Pilton England Worthy Farm
June 29, 2009 Manchester Manchester Academy
July 1, 2009[K] Cork Ireland The Docklands
July 3, 2009[L] Werchter Belgium Werchter Festival Grounds
July 4, 2009 London England G-A-Y
July 8, 2009[M] Floriana Malta Fuq il-Fosos
July 9, 2009 Paris France L'Olympia
July 11, 2009[N] Perth and Kinross Scotland Balado
July 12, 2009[O] County Kildare Ireland Punchestown Racecourse
July 13, 2009[P] Manchester England O2 Apollo Manchester
July 14, 2009 London O2 Academy Brixton
July 16, 2009 Munich Germany Zenith die Kulturhalle
July 17, 2009 Cologne Palladium
July 18, 2009 Berlin Columbiahalle
July 20, 2009 Amsterdam Netherlands Melkweg
July 21, 2009 Zürich Switzerland Maag Event Hall
July 22, 2009 Vienna Austria Gasometer Halle
July 24, 2009 Ibiza Spain Eden
July 25, 2009 Amsterdam Netherlands Paradiso
July 26, 2009 Hamburg Germany Stadtpark Freilichtbühne
July 28, 2009 Helsinki Finland Kulttuuritalo
July 30, 2009 Oslo Norway Sentrum Scene
July 31, 2009 Copenhagen Denmark K.B. Hallen
August 1, 2009[Q] Östersund Sweden Storsjöyran Festligterräng
August 2, 2009 Stockholm Lilla Scen
August 7, 2009[R] Osaka Japan Maishima Sports Island
August 8, 2009[R] Chiba Makuhari Messe
August 9, 2009 Seoul South Korea Olympic Gymnastics Arena
August 11, 2009 Quezon City Philippines Araneta Coliseum
August 12, 2009 Downtown Core Singapore Fort Canning Park
August 15, 2009 Cotai Macau Venetian Arena
August 19, 2009[S] Tel Aviv Israel Israel Trade Fairs & Convention Center
August 22, 2009[T] Weston-under-Lizard England Weston Park
August 23, 2009[T] Chelmsford Hylands Park
North America[18]
September 28, 2009 Richmond United States Landmark Theater
September 29, 2009 Washington, D.C. DAR Constitution Hall
Festivals and other miscellaneous performances
A This concert was a part of the "Dinah Shore Weekend"[22]
B This concert was a part of the "White Party"[23]
C This concert was a part of the "SWR3 Party"[24]
D This concert was a part of Kiss 95.7's "Summer Kick Off"[25]
E This concert was a part of the "Grammy Celebration Concert Tour"[26]
F This concert was a part of the "Second Chance Prom"[27]
G This concert was a part of Channel 933's "Summer Kick Off"
H This concert was a part of "Wango Tango"[28]
I This concert was a part of 107.9 The End's "EndFest 2009"
J This concert was a part of the "Glastonbury Festival"[29]
K This concert was a part of "Live at the Marquee"[30]
L This concert was a part of "Rock Werchter"[31]
M This concert was a part of "Isle of MTV"[32]
N This concert was a part of "T in the Park"[33]
O This concert was a part of "Oxegen"[34]
P This concert was a part of "Orange Rockcorps Live Concert Event"[35]
Q This concert was a part of "Storsjöyran"[36]
R These concerts were a part of the "Summer Sonic Festival"[37]
S This concert was a part of "Non-Stop Musix"[38]
T These concerts were a part of "V Festival"[39]
Cancellations and rescheduled shows
March 13, 2009 Los Angeles, California Avalon Moved to the Wiltern Theatre
March 25, 2009 Pontiac, Michigan Crofoot Ballroom Moved to the Royal Oak Music Theatre in Royal Oak, Michigan
March 31, 2009 New York City, New York Webster Hall Cancelled
April 1, 2009 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Theatre of the Living Arts Cancelled
April 2, 2009 Washington, D.C. 9:30 Club Cancelled
April 3, 2009 Richmond, Virginia Toad's Place Moved to the National Theater
April 3, 2009 Richmond, Virginia National Theater Cancelled

Box office score data

Venue City Tickets sold / available Gross revenue
Wiltern Theatre Los Angeles 2,700 / 2,700 (100%) $52,904[40]
Metropolis Montreal 2,255 / 2,255 (100%) $50,387[40]
Royal Oak Music Theater Royal Oak 1,700 / 1,700 (100%) $34,000[41]
Gothic Theater Englewood 1,088 / 1,088 (100%) $20,000[41]
House of Blues San Diego 1,000 / 1,000 (100%) $18,500[42]
The Ritz Ybor Tampa 1,545 / 1,560 (99%) $31,065[43]
DAR Constitution Hall Washington DC 3,500 / 3,500 (100%) $141,004[43]
TOTAL 13,788 / 13,803 (99%) $1,347,862


External links

  • Lady Gaga : News : "The Fame Ball" U.S. Tour
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