Bad Bunny Illuminates Madison Square Garden

Bad Bunny Illuminates Madison Square Garden

The latin trap don and fashion risk-taker proved his pop-messiah allure on Saturday.

The latin trap don and fashion risk-taker proved his pop-messiah allure on Saturday.

Photography: Augusto Silva Alliegro

Text: SAMUEL ANDERSON

At his sold-out show at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, Bad Bunny incinerated any doubts of his cross-cultural bona fides. That Bad Bunny—king of Latin trap, don of high-key fashion—would pack a venue like MSG may have once been considered a long shot; while he and contemporaries like J Balvin and Maluma have made latin trap and nu-reggaeton music a global phenom, it's often packaged for mainstream consumption alongside poppier attractions, as with non-Spanish-speaking Justin Bieber’s pantomimed rendition of “Despacito” and Madonna’s new comeback single, “Medellín” featuring Maluma.

But cultural norms are no match for Bad Bunny, who not only brings a laconic, almost warlock-like flow to the pop landscape, but who also cuts a flamboyant, fashion-forward figure—one especially radical by American hip-hop’s standards of hypermasculinity. Rocking neon press-on claws and reflective cyclops shades, he alternated between full pop-messiah and Bugs-Bunny-casanova modes, entering to a boxing-match-style voiceover and shouting out the arena’s “mujeres solteras” (that’s “single women”) one minute, hopping around the LED stage in an exaggerated gait the next.

VMAN was there to capture the emergence of music’s reigning cross-over heavyweight. Below, see inside this weekend’s hottest ticket.

Bad Bunny at Madison Square Garden, April 27 (photo: Augusto Silva Alliegro)

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