To any music fan who is unaware of the intricacies of the career of Ariana Grande, she can seem like just another artist among the seemingly endless conveyor belt of female vocalists on the airwaves today. With the prevalence of artists such as Zara Larsson, Anne-Marie, Rihanna, and others, getting airtime currently, another female singer can easily get overlooked. Upon learning that she is yet another to come from the Disney stable of teen entertainment programming, she gained notoriety by starring in, and featuring on the soundtrack of the, popular Nickelodeon TV series, Victorious, it can become increasingly easy to dismiss her as a credible artist. But Grande is not to be taken lightly. A Broadway star at the age of 13, her first two albums Yours Truly (2013), and My Everything (2014), released under Republic Records, were massively popular and were greeted with critical acclaim, and it quickly became apparent that Grande had a voice to separate her from her contemporaries, as exemplified by an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in September 2015.
Her third album, Dangerous Woman, released in 2016, was regarded as one of the pop albums of that year, and it was easy to hear why. Grande, and her label, assembled a strong team of writers and producers to help them create an album of fifteen pop bangers that would dominate mainstream music across the globe, and they succeeded, as the collection was again greeted with critical acclaim and would introduce the music of the artist to a wider audience thab before. The success of the record allowed Grande to launch into the massive seventy-four date Dangerous Woman Tour, a tour that would, for unforeseen and tragic reasons, result in Grande becoming one of the most respected and admired figures in modern media/art.
The horrific act of terror that took place in the Manchester Arena on 22 May 2017, just as the seventh show of the European leg of Grande‘s Dangerous Woman Tour had come to a close, left a resounding effect on many due to those targeted, and also due to the way it attacked the institution of live music which serves as a distraction for many of us. It also clearly had a massive effect on Grande herself.
from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don’t have words.
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) May 23, 2017
If somebody told you back at the start of 2017 that a music act was going to be at the centre of an event that would leave a lasting affect on people during the year, realistically Ariana Grande would have been a long way down the list of acts that would have popped into your head. However last night (4 June 2017), the 23 year old staged a concert in the Old Trafford Cricket Grounds that would never be forgotten by the people of Manchester and people further afield as they became united under the theme of #OneLoveManchester. Grande recruited an impressive list of stars to perform at the show, including; Miley Cyrus, Niall Horan, and Take That, among others. The concert stood as both an act of defiance by the city of Manchester to the atrocity that occurred in the Manchester Arena, and also as a representation of the power that music has to unite us all under one umbrella. The event was greeted with universal acclaim and resulted in praise for Grande who had turned one of the most traumatic events to ever happen in the city of Manchester into a powerful stance against terror.