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One Love Manchester concert: One week on and Ariana Grande still touches the hearts of Manchester

by Ellie Gregory. Published Sun 11 Jun 2017 15:25

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One week on and the emotions are still high after the phenomenal One Love Manchester benefit concert staged by Ariana Grande as her hit single dominates the charts.

Now not only have the people of Manchester petitioned for Ariana to be an honorary Mancunian, after her dedication to the city and the victims of the attack, but her hit single ‘One Last Time’ has made it back into the top 10 charts at number two in memory of last week’s concert.

Thousands came to Manchester’s Old Trafford Cricket Ground from across the nation and the globe to show their love and support, and to not be silenced after the terrorist attack at the MEN Arena after Ariana Grande’s last song of her gig.

Just less than two weeks after the attack, the concert was held to raise an emergency fund for the victims and the 22 victim’s families who's lives were taken on the night.

The event proved a great success not only to show that Manchester has united as one, but the event also raised over £2million alone to support those affected by the attack.

A beautiful atmosphere lingered throughout the evening, as the crowd showed sheer support and determination by engaging with one another and by just attending the concert.

Yet many spectators were limp, bounded by crutches and slings which demonstrated a bold statement that they were brave and resilient.

The crowd cheered for the Mancunian poet, Tony Walsh, who opened the concert with his heartfelt poem about the greatness, history and defiance of Manchester.

Empowering the people, Walsh said: “But we won’t take defeat and we don't want your pity

Because this a place where we stand strong together

With a smile on our face, Mancunians forever!”

The crowd were ready.

After Take That kicked off the show, Robbie Williams followed after and emphasised the unity of the crowd that night by changing the lyrics to his 1998 hit single ‘Strong’ to ‘Manchester we’re strong’.

This line echoed throughout the night, and continued even in the late hours after the show as spectators filled the local streets with a powerful harmony.

After some more incredible performances from Pharrell Williams, Miley Cyrus and One Direction’s Niall Horan, the co-producers of the event, Melvin Benn, Simon Moran and Ariana’s manager Scooter Braun, addressed the crowd and said: “We will be ready. We will be great. We will be fearless and we will honour our children.

“Hatred will never win.

“Fear will never divide us because on this day, we stood with Manchester.”

The crowd felt empowered by these words and showed that they were ready to embrace the talented artists so that they could celebrate the lives lost at the attack.

The artists created an emotional spectacle, as the Black Eyed Peas, Katy Perry, Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande picked songs that had the meaning of love and community behind them.

Playing one of their most memorable and beautiful songs, the Black Eyed Peas joined with Ariana to perform ‘Where is the Love’ as the lyrics really hit home to Manchester and encouraged them to continue to love.

“People killin', people dyin'
Children hurt and you hear them cryin'
Can you practice what you preach?
Or would you turn the other cheek?

Father, Father, Father help us
Send some guidance from above
'Cause people got me, got me questionin'
Where is the love” — Where is the Love, Black Eyed Peas, 2003

But what really blew people away that night was the colourful spectacle brought by Coldplay, uniting the crowd with a rendition of Oasis’ ‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’.

For miles did the chorus echo as the crowd took over Chris Martin’s lead.

When you thought the concert couldn't get anymore homely, the Oasis singer himself, Liam Gallagher, made a guest appearance to the delight of the sea of fans who screamed when he took to the stage to perform ‘Rock and Roll Star’ for the people of Manchester.

Yet the crowd, staff, media and viewers at home really felt proud when the 23-year-old Ariana performed throughout the concert, and delivered a graceful and truly emotional cover of ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ to draw the night to an end.

Ariana organised the concert, and changed the production of the show after speaking to Olivia Campbell’s mum, who was a victim of the attack.

Ariana said: “She told me to stop crying as Olivia wouldn't want me to cry and said Olivia would have wanted to hear the hits.

"We had a totally different show planned and had a rehearsal but changed everything.

“Tonight has been filled with love and fun and bright energy, so thank you for that.”

Despite critics saying it was too soon for the show to commence, Ariana delivered a brave and dignified concert which touched the hearts of Mancunians, Britons and internationals.


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"what a show,a young artist who felt so much guilt through no fault of her own, showed no fear, love and unity STAND PROUD they will not win" paul smith, kidderminster around 1 year, 4 months ago