Ariana Grande bravely returned to Manchester for a benefit concert on Sunday, honoring the attack’s victims and survivors. The 23-year-old pop star led the star-studded “One Love Manchester” concert at the Old Trafford cricket grounds, which was filled with thousands of people.
The free concert was seen by around 50,000 people and ran for more than three hours. Ariana Grande was unstoppable all night long, tirelessly going on stage number after number. When the show closed, audiences and celebrities alike praised the pop star for her resilience and generosity.
Piers Morgan Calls Ariana Grande An “Admirable Young Woman”
TV host Piers Morgan previously criticized Ariana for flying back to the United States shortly after the terrorist attack last May 22. Morgan took to Twitter to apologize for his uncalled for remarks. In a series of tweets, Morgan said that while he thought Ariana was wrong to go home after the attack, “tonight she’s putting on a fabulous show.”
“I misjudged you, Ariana Grande, and I apologise. You’re an admirable young woman and this is a magnificent night. Respect.”
The singer’s fans applauded the British host for humbly admitting his initial harsh judgment. In the end, as the concert’s theme enforced, love always wins.
“One Love Manchester”: Celebrities And Surprise Performances
Wearing a white sweatshirt with the words “One Love Manchester,” Ariana Grande opened the event with her hit single “One Last Time.” She tearfully addressed the audience and thanked them for being strong after what happened.
“I want to thank you so much for coming together, and for being so loving, and strong, and unified. I love you so much.”
Dozens of celebrities and singers joined Grande in the benefit gig, including Robbie Williams, Niall Horan, Katy Perry, Stevie Wonder, Pharell Williams, and David Beckham. Ariana’s boyfriend, Mac Miller, also showed his support and did a couple of duets with the pop star.
Oasis’ lead vocalist Liam Gallagher surprised the audience and sang the band’s hit “Live Forever.” Coldplay’s Chris Martin also joined him on stage and played the guitar.
Chris Martin and Ariana sang another Oasis hit, “Don’t Look Back In Anger,” in what was said to be one of the show’s highlights. The 50,000-strong crowd emotionally sang along and waved their lit-up phones as they mouthed the song’s powerful lyrics.
Justin Bieber came out to perform his hit “Love Yourself.” After, he led the crowd to chant “love” in another touching moment. Miley Cyrus also surprised the audience and did a duet with Ariana Grande. Miley was one of the first celebrities to respond after the May 22 attack, saying that she can’t wait to hug her friend Ariana.
The Black Eyed Peas, sans Fergie, performed their anthem “Where is the Love?” with Grande. Will.i.am dedicated the song to London’s police force, who he said showed strength amid tragedy.
“All these people who are fearless, who came for love, who will not be separated.”
Another highlight of the night was when Ariana shared the stage with the Parrs Wood High School choir, singing her ballad “My Everything.” After the song number, Ariana hugged 12-year-old soloist Natasha-Rose Seth, moving many to tears.
“One Love Manchester” Raises £2 million
“One Love Manchester” was also broadcast live on BBC One. According to the Telegraph, the concert raised more than £2 million in donations which will be given to the families of those affected by the Manchester terrorist attack.
Prior to the concert, Ariana Grande visited the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital, where many of her young fans are being treated after suffering injuries due to the terrorist attack. The singer tried to uplift the victims’ spirits by posing with them for selfies and giving each one a hug.
One of the victims’ fathers, Adam Harrison, described the young megastar as “amazing” and “brilliant,” Today reported.
“She just came skipping on to our ward. She was brilliant, I thought it may be a bit almost rehearsed, or a bit false…but she was just amazing, there was no time limit, there was no ‘Don’t touch her, don’t take pictures.’ She was just there for anything, everything.”
[Featured Image by Dave Hogan/Getty Images for “One Love Manchester”]