Belfast Telegraph

Line-up and date confirmed for Ariana Grande's Manchester tribute gig

Justin Bieber, Niall Horan and Coldplay will join Ariana Grande at a special tribute concert this weekend, to honour the victims of the Manchester Arena terror attack.

22 people were killed, including seven children, when a suicide bomber detonated an explosive following Ariana's Dangerous Woman show in the city last week.

On Friday, the US singer (23) announced she would be returning to Manchester to host a benefit concert in support of the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund.

She said: "I don't want to go the rest of the year without being able to see and hold and uplift my fans.

"I'll be returning to the incredibly brave city of Manchester to spend time with my fans and to have a benefit concert in honour and raise money for the victims and their families."

The fund was set up by the Manchester City Council and British Red Cross to support survivors and victims' families and has so far raised more than £6 million.

Red Cross chief executive Mike Adamson has praissed Grande’s “gesture of solidarity”.

He said: “It will help raise funds to support the survivors and the families who tragically lost someone last week.

“This event is an opportunity for people to come together and celebrate things that unite us – music, humanity and the will to do something to help others.”

The concert will take place at the Old Trafford cricket ground on Sunday, June 4 and will also feature Take That, Miley Cyrus, Usher and Pharrell. It will be broadcast live on BBC TV and radio.

Tickets will go on sale on Thursday at 10am.

Fans who were at the show last week will be offered free tickets to the event.

Earlier on Tuesday, Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said the force had been working with the singer’s management team on the “finer details” to ensure the gig goes ahead.

In an interview with BBC Radio Manchester, the senior officer said the pop star’s team were “very keen” to return to the city “sooner rather than later” for a proposed date this weekend but that it clashed with Carrick’s charity testimonial at the nearby football stadium.

Mr Hopkins said: “When the idea of the concert came up, the first reaction was we need to speak to the families of the victims and see what they feel. It is fair to say that the majority of them are very much in favour, there are some that clearly aren’t and that is absolutely understandable.

“Ariana Grande’s team were very keen to come back to Manchester sooner rather than later so we have been working with Michael Carrick’s team and working with her team to try and make this happen because clearly we can’t have 65,000 people at Old Trafford for Michael Carrick’s testimonial and 50,000 in Lancashire Cricket Club both at the same time. It would just have caused utter traffic chaos, let alone the security issues for us.

“So yesterday I was speaking personally with Michael and his team who, I have to say, have been brilliant in trying to come to a compromise around enabling us to make sure that both go ahead.”

After the attack, Ariana posted her condolences on Twitter, saying: "Broken. from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don't have words."

She has since put her Dangerous Woman tour on hold and cancelled two shows at London's O2 Arena.

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