Ariana Grande Headlines Manchester Pride In Emotional First Return Since 2017 Terror Attack
Ariana Grande returned to Manchester over the weekend to serve as a headliner for the city’s Gay Pride event.
The 26-year-old artist’s show on Sunday marked her first in the English city since May 2017. Grande was performing at Manchester Arena at the time when her concert became the site of a bombing. Grande, who is on her Sweetener World Tour, took a moment during her show to voice her support for the gay community.
“The gays have always had my heart personally,” said Grande. “I spent some of the happiest times of my teenage years singing in gay bars in New York City. I was in a Broadway show and whenever I’d finish a show I’d just go to a gay bar and sing Whitney Houston covers until someone would ask me to leave. It’s always been such a special thing for me. So, thank you so much for accepting me, celebrating me the way I’ve always celebrated you guys.”
The “Boyfriend” singer also said she loves Manchester and admitted during the concert that she felt “nervous” and “overwhelmed.”
Grande ended her show with a special acoustic performance of her 2014 hit “One Last Time.”
— Capital (@CapitalOfficial) August 26, 2019
The 2017 terror attack at Manchester Arena killed 22 people and injured dozens more. Shortly after the tragedy, Grande put together a star-filled benefit show, One Love Manchester, for the bombing’s victims and their families. Manchester then named the Grammy-winning artist its first honorary citizen.
This year, Grande even got her own mural in Manchester:
— Manchester News MEN (@MENnewsdesk) August 23, 2019
In an interview with British Vogue last year, Grande revealed how she dealt with post-traumatic stress disorder in the wake of the bombing.
“It’s hard to talk about because so many people have suffered such severe, tremendous loss. But, yeah, it’s a real thing,” she says. “I know those families and my fans, and everyone there experienced a tremendous amount of it as well. Time is the biggest thing. I feel like I shouldn’t even be talking about my own experience – like I shouldn’t even say anything. I don’t think I’ll ever know how to talk about it and not cry.”
Grande is next set to hold a concert on Tuesday in Paris.