Ariana Grande is opening up about the 2017 suicide bombing at her Manchester concert in her new YouTube docuseries Dangerous Woman Diaries.
On the fourth episode of the series, which aired Thursday, Grande, 25, shared a heartfelt letter she wrote to fans about the attack, which left 22 people dead and 500 others injured.
“I’m writing to you this February 22, 2018,” Grande began.
“It’s been eight months since the attack at our show at the Manchester Arena. It’s impossible to know where to start or to know what to say about this part. May 22, 2017, will leave me speechless and filled with questions for the rest of my life.
“Music is an escape. Music is the safest thing I’ve ever known. Music — pop music, stan culture — is something that brings people together, introduces them to some of their best friends, and makes them feel like they can be themselves. It is comfort. It is fun. It is expression. It is happiness. It is the last thing that would ever harm someone. It is safe,” the “God Is a Woman” singer continued.
“When something so opposite and so poisonous takes place in your world that is supposed to be everything but that… it is shocking and heartbreaking in a way that seems impossible to fully recover from.”
Grande went on to explain that the tragedy taught her resilience and to not take life for granted.
“The spirit of the people of Manchester, the families affected by this horrendous tragedy, and my fans around the world have permanently impacted all of us for the rest of our lives. Their love, strength, and unity showed me, my team, my dancers, band, and entire crew not to be defeated. To continue during the scariest and saddest of times. To not let hate win. But instead, love as loudly as possible, and to appreciate every moment.”
“The people of Manchester were able to change an event that portrayed the worst of humanity into one that portrayed the most beautiful of humanity. ‘Like a handprint on my heart’… I think of Manchester constantly and will carry this with me every day for the rest of my life,” Grande added.
Following the attack, the singer put her tour on hold as she suffered from trauma and questioned whether she could ever sing again.
Almost two weeks after the incident, Grande took the stage again in Manchester for a benefit concert she co-organized.
Wearing a sweatshirt that read “One Love Manchester,” the singer opened her performance with her hit song “Be Alright,” followed by “Break Free.”
On the stage, Grande was joined by Victoria Monet, the Black Eyed Peas, Miley Cyrus and her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller, who died of an accidental overdose on Sept. 7.
Grande closed out the show with an emotional performance of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”
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All proceeds from the concert, which took place at the Emirates Old Trafford stadium in the city, went to the Red Cross’s Manchester Emergency Fund to help victims and families impacted by the attack.
Grande’s docuseries did not include any footage from the attack, but took viewers behind the scenes of the benefit concert. The docuseries also follows the singer on her 2017 Dangerous Woman World Tour and the making of her latest album Sweetener.
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