Recovered Gaga proves monster hit
Lady Gaga fought back emotions as she played her first UK performance in almost a year following her recovery from hip surgery.
Thousands of her fans, known as Little Monsters, and competition winners watched the 27-year-old singer as she took to the stage suspended in a metal swing at the Roundhouse in Camden to open the 2013 iTunes Festival in London.
Gaga - whose real name is Stefani Germanotta - revealed the gig felt like she was "back home", likening herself to Dorothy in The Wizard Of Oz.
"To say I've missed you is a big understatement. When I'm without you, I can't live," she said. "I'm a bit like Dorothy right now - there's no place like home."
The singer performed seven new songs from her forthcoming third album ARTPOP including latest single Applause, Swine and Aura. Dubbed "Swinefest", the gig also featured "pig-busters" - people in Ghostbuster-style costumes wearing pig masks.
As she introduced Swine, she admitted: "It's really scary when you're young and you don't know what it means to be grown up yet so you hang out with adults and do what they do... I felt like trash on the inside. I wrote this song to let go of all that pain - and to hopefully help you get rid of yours. A place I never wanted to go back tonight but I'll do anything for you Monsters."
Gaga, who underwent surgery for her broken hip in February, admitted making the record had been a cathartic process.
"I went through some really tough times I've never talked about. I won't tell you now - no need to be a downer - but as I wrote ARTPOP I had to take off my wigs and make-up," she said.
"I used them to be different people and it worked."
She added: "I wanted to make music to set me free. I wanted to set myself free of this box of pop music - it's like I have to be a good girl but I want to be out of the box."