Last night in Manchester the benefit concert was held for the 22 victims and the 119 injured. Let me be honest I was completely against this concert and that it was held so soon after but I have to admit now that I was wrong. It was a very moving and appropriate night where hearts and souls were healed. Not only of the girls who were at the concert but also of Ariana Grande. The songs were well chosen and fitted the event.
The concert started with a moment of silence and with Marcus Mumford singing a very sad but accurate song. Manchester’s own Take That performed „Shine“, „Giants“ and „Rule the World“ and they introduced their brother Robbie Williams who was very moved already. He came on stage getting the crowd to sing: „ Manchester we’re strong, we’re strong, we’re strong. We’re still singing our songs, our songs, our songs“. After that he sang „Angels“ and Ariana’s fans held up a sign „For Our Angels“. I was moved to tears and very sad.
Pharrell Williams and Miley Cyrus sang happy which to be honest I didn’t like. After Take That and Robbie Williams they seemed less affected and more carefree. The tone got even lighter when Niall Horan former band member of OneDirection performed his two songs.
Little Mix took the stage and they „were happy to be there“. This sentence stuck with me. I don’t think they understood the purpose of this evening. They shouldn’t have been invited.
Scooter Braun, Ariana’s Manager, came on stage and sent a message from an injured boy called Adam „Don’t go forward in anger, love spreads.“
Finally Ariana Grande made her first public appearance after the attack two weeks ago. Like her the audience was close to tears and it was hard for her to perform but she wanted to give her fans strength. Throughout the evening Ariana came on stage and sang her hits. She said that Olivia’s Mum told her to do so because that is what Olivia would have wanted. Olivia Campbell was a fifteen year old girl and is one of the 22 victims. After this announcement it felt like it was OK to enjoy the concert.
“Where is the love?” by the Black Eyed Peas is still – 14 years after its first release – very current. Ariana Grande replaced Fergie and together they sang this song with its powerful message.
The wonderful Katy Perry spoke to Manchester and to us on TV and said what everyone thought. It is hard not to feel anger or fight against terrorism with Love but all we can do is try. She then continued with a heartfelt „Part of Me“ and made the crowd „Roar“!
The surprise of the evening was Justin Bieber. The often-critized singer stood there alone and played the guitar. His sang „Love yourself“ and Cold Water. During his song the TV showed a policeman dancing around in a circle with little kids. Very touching. Justin left the stage almost in tears after a powerful speech.
Coldplay rocked the stage as always and they had their moment with „Fix You“. Since the Gallagher brothers won’t perform with each other anymore Coldplay stepped up and sang together with the Mancunian crowd „Don’t look back in Anger“ to Ariana Grande. If she couldn’t have both Oasis guys at least she got Manchesters son Liam Gallagher who came on with a loud cheer.
Her 2nd last song was „One Last Time“ which was her encore just under two weeks ago after which the attack happened. She hugged all the stars on stage and held onto her boyfriend Mac Miller for support. Ariana finished the concert with „Somewhere over the rainbow“ and again everyone was moved to tears including me watching on TV.
This incredible young girl put on a show within a week which was exactly what everyone needed. At first everyone was sad and during the course of the evening the audience started to break free and enjoy the concert. It was a cure for everyone!
I you want to donate to the victims and to the families affected please visit https://uk.onelovemanchestershop.com
Proceeds of the sale will be donated to the we love manchester emergency fund.